Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

January 21, 2015
Trying to project an image of success? It could make you dwell on your failures
Life is full of experiences that challenge how we see ourselves and we often compensate by buying products that reinforce our ideal self-image.

Antisocial and non-antisocial siblings share difficulty recognizing emotions
Teenagers with brothers and sisters who exhibit severe antisocial behavior share a similar impairment with their siblings in recognizing emotions, according to a new study from the University of Southampton.

Concern over skin whitener marketing
A study led by a James Cook University marketing expert has raised concerns over the ethics of the marketing of skin-whitening products, widely available in Australia.

The BMJ calls for action over illegal payments to India's private medical colleges
Action is urgently needed to tackle the illegal but seemingly common practice of paying huge fees for admission to India's private medical colleges, warns a special report in The BMJ by Mumbai journalist, Jeetha D'Silva.

New UCLA research suggests walnuts may improve memory
Eating walnuts may improve performance on cognitive function tests, including those for memory, concentration and information processing speed according to new research from the David Geffen School of Medicine at The University of California, Los Angeles, led by Dr.

Israel-Japan conference to foster cooperation in brain research
The Advances in Brain Sciences conference was jointly hosted by the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot and the RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan.

A new vaccine that could help you quit smoking (video)
Researchers at the Scripps Institute in La Jolla, California, are working on a nicotine vaccine that could put an end to the addiction.

Does corporate social responsibility reduce negative reviews for bad service?
When a company's service falls short of expectations, consumers can react harshly, spreading negative comments or changing companies.

Genetics Society of America names Sue Biggins as recipient of Novitski Prize
The Genetics Society of America is pleased to announce that Sue Biggins, Ph.D., of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center has been awarded the Society's Edward Novitski Prize.

Weight Watchers: Shed the pounds but lose your friends?
If you're trying to lose weight, Weight Watchers might seem like the ideal place to share advice and get support.

Transmission of Ebola appears tied to increasing population density in forested regions
Researchers at SUNY Downstate Medical Center have found an apparent link between human population density and vegetation cover in Africa and the spread of the Ebola virus from animal hosts to humans.

NFCR-supported research finds new way to combat resistant cancers
A team of researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital has developed a new platform that can rapidly identify effective drug combinations for lung cancer patients whose tumors have stopped responding to targeted therapy.

Does black-and-white advertising help consumers make better decisions?
According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, black-and-white advertising gets consumers to focus on basic product features while color advertising can influence consumers to pay more for products with unnecessary extras.

Humorous complaining: Funny online reviews get lots of attention but do they get results?
Unless you're just looking to entertain your fellow online shoppers, you may want to think twice about writing that funny Amazon or Yelp review.

LA BioMed researchers honored
LA BioMed researchers are honored as being among the region's best physicians.

Ecocentricity: How do consumers decide what makes a product 'green'?
The greenness of a product has become increasingly important to consumers, but how do they decide how green a product is in the first place?

NYU researchers reveal how the mundane can be meaningful -- and remembered
It's not surprising that our memories of highly emotional events are quite strong.

USC study finds blood vessels in older brains break down, possibly leading to Alzheimer's
Researchers at Keck Medicine of USC used high-resolution imaging of the living human brain to show for the first time that the brain's protective blood barrier becomes leaky with age, starting at the hippocampus, a critical learning and memory center that is damaged by Alzheimer's disease.

Mutated ATRX gene linked to brain tumors potential biomarker for rare adrenal tumors too
For the first time, researchers at Penn's Abramson Cancer Center have found that a mutation in the ATRX may serve as a much-needed biomarker for the pheochromocytomas and paragangliomas that become malignant.

Atmospheric warming heats the bottom of ice sheets, as well as the top
New research shows for the first time that meltwater from the surface of an ice cap in northeastern Greenland can make its way beneath the ice and become trapped, refilling a subglacial lake.

Study's findings do not support chlorhexidine bathing in ICUs
Vanderbilt University Medical Center researchers have found that bathing critically ill patients with disposable chlorhexidine cloths did not decrease the incidence of health care-associated infections when compared to less expensive nonantimicrobial cloths, according to a study appearing online in JAMA this week.

Scientists move closer to a personalized treatment solution for intellectual disability
Scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have produced an approach that protects animal models against a type of genetic disruption that causes intellectual disability, including serious memory impairments and altered anxiety levels.

When the price just feels right: Do rounded numbers appeal to our emotions?
Consumers usually look for the lowest price when shopping for a product.

Synthetic amino acid enables safe, new biotechnology solutions to global problems
Scientists from Yale have devised a way to ensure genetically modified organisms can be safely confined in the environment, overcoming a major obstacle to widespread use of GMOs in agriculture, energy production, waste management, and medicine.

Space Station worms' research potential is anything but flat
The study of flatworms aboard the space station has the potential to be rather robust in implications for regenerative medicine, an area of treatment for repairing or replacing human cells, tissues or organs on Earth to restore normal function.

Biological safety lock for genetically modified organisms
Scientists have genetically recoded a strain of E. coli to depend on a synthetic amino acid so the bacteria can't survive outside the lab.

Autistic brains go their own way
An analysis of fMRI studies reveals that the brains of people with autistic spectrum disorder are more idiosyncratic than others.

How do emerging market firms compete in developed markets? The case of India
How do some companies from less-developed nations go from 'zero to hero' in such a short amount of time relative to large Western firms?

Smart keyboard cleans and powers itself -- and can tell who you are
In a novel twist in cybersecurity, scientists have developed a self-cleaning, self-powered smart keyboard that can identify computer users by the way they type.

Deaths of extremely premature infants decrease, fewer dying of breathing complications
In a large, national study of extremely premature infants, researchers found that death rates decreased from 2000 to 2011.

Pasture feeding may improve nutritional benefits of red meat
A new review article in Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety published by the Institute of Food Technologists found that pasture-fed lamb meat is high in polyunsaturated fat due to the specific plant species consumed.

APS applauds President's support of R&D in SOTU
The American Physical Society applauds President's support of research and development in the State of the Union Address.

Marketing a new product? Getting consumers to visualize using it could backfire
Companies often provide detailed information that encourages consumers to visualize using a new product.

The path to artificial photosynthesis
Scientists at the Helmholtz Center for Materials and Energy in collaboration with the School of Chemistry and ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science at Monash University, Australia, have precisely characterized a manganese catalyst's electronic states.

Twitter can predict rates of coronary heart disease, according to Penn research
Twitter has broken news stories, launched and ended careers, started social movements and toppled governments, all by being an easy, direct and immediate way for people to share what's on their minds.

The immune system may play a key role in viral therapy's effectiveness against tumors
Viral therapy for childhood cancer could possibly improve if treatments such as chemotherapy do not first suppress patients' immune systems, according to findings published today in the journal Molecular Therapy--Oncolytics.

New drug compounds show promise against endometriosis
Two new drug compounds -- one of which has already proven useful in a mouse model of multiple sclerosis -- appear to be effective in treating endometriosis, a disorder that, like MS, is driven by estrogen and inflammation, scientists report in Science Translational Medicine.

New type of antibiotic resistance living in hiding
New research from the University of Copenhagen shows how MRSA bacterial strains under special circumstances can withstand higher concentration of antibiotics.

VCU researcher receives NSF grant to extend lifespan of Li-ion batteries
A Virginia Commonwealth University professor has received a five-year, $505,000 award from the National Science Foundation to make lithium-ion batteries -- which power electric vehicles and portable electronic devices -- far more efficient, sustainable and environmentally friendly.

Blended ecological knowledge systems yield insight for managing beargrass
In a study that blended tribal cultural knowledge with scientific methods, US Forest Service researchers identified the ecological conditions of forest sites preferred by harvesters of beargrass for use in traditional weaving.

Nano-beaker offers insight into the condensation of atoms
An team of physicists has succeeded in mapping the condensation of individual atoms using a new method.

Queen's University Belfast leads pioneering research into cyber security
A major, new initiative to explore the growing area of cyber security and to examine the knock-on effects on society -- legal, ethical and cultural -- is to be established at Queen's University Belfast.

Close monitoring of renal tumors may provide alternative to surgery
In patients likely to have surgery, close, active monitoring of small renal tumors confined to the kidneys is associated with low rates of tumor growth or death.

Two lakes beneath the ice in Greenland, gone within weeks
Researchers discovered craters left behind when two sub-glacial lakes in Greenland drained away -- an indication that the natural plumbing system beneath the ice sheet is overflowing with meltwater.

Heightened scents: Do ambient fragrances make consumers purchase more?
Do consumers make different choices based on the fragrance surrounding them?

A call for a new model to evaluate medical schools
In a new study, researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital present a new model to evaluate medical schools' production of academic physicians with biomedical research careers.

UNL drillers help make new Antarctic discoveries
Expedition to Antarctica yields new information about how climate change affects Antarctic glaciers; new ecosystem discovered in estuary beneath the ice.

Inaugural symposium of the Hyper-Kamiokande Proto-Collaboration
An inaugural symposium will be held for the Hyper-Kamiokande proto-collaboration to address the mysteries of the origin and evolution of the Universe's matter and to test theories of elementary particle unification.

Most endangered chimpanzees have complex evolutionary past, perilous future
Complementary analyses of population genetics, geographical distribution and habitat use paint a new picture of the evolutionary past and potentially bleak future of the Nigeria-Cameroon Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes ellioti), already the most endangered chimp subspecies.

A spoonful of sugar in silver nanoparticles to regulate their toxicity
The use of colloidal silver to treat illnesses has become more popular in recent years, but its ingestion, prohibited in countries like the US, can be harmful to health.

Next-generation sequencing offers insight into how species adapt to climate change
Next-generation sequencing allows for the creation and analysis of vast amounts of data about populations and their responses to shifting environmental conditions, including climate change.

Researchers learning more about herbicide defense 'switch' in cereal crops
For decades, herbicide safeners have been used as a defense mechanism against stress caused by herbicides in cereal crops such as maize, rice, grain sorghum, and wheat.

Sleeping on stomach may increase risk of sudden death in epilepsy
New research shows that stomach sleepers with epilepsy may be at higher risk of sudden unexpected death, drawing parallels to sudden infant death syndrome in babies.

NSF-funded Antarctic drilling team is first to bore through hundreds of meters of ice to where ice sheet, ocean and land converge
Using a specially designed hot-water drill to cleanly bore through a half mile of ice, a National Science Foundation-funded team of researchers has become the first ever to reach and sample the 'grounding zone,' where Antarctic ice, land and sea all converge.

Only the lonely...(reveal the secrets of atomic nuclei)
Individual protons and neutrons in atomic nuclei turn out not to behave according to the predictions made by existing theoretical models.

Alternative DNA repair mechanism could provide better treatment for neuroblastoma in kids
Targeting DNA repair pathways could provide new treatment options for children with high-risk cancer.

Tel Aviv University's professor Yosef Shiloh Receives first Olav Thon Foundation Prize
Norway's largest charitable organization, the Olav Thon Foundation, awarded one of its first international research awards in the medical and natural sciences to Tel Aviv University's Prof.

Stopping cancer in its tracks
A grant from the Canadian Cancer Society will fund research to block metastasis.

LSU Health New Orleans identifies toxic Ebola protein fragment
William Gallaher, PhD, Emeritus Professor of Microbiology, Immunology and Parasitology at Louisiana State University Health New Orleans School of Medicine, has discovered a fragment of an Ebola virus protein that is toxic to cells and may contribute to infection and illness.

AFOSR awards grants to 57 scientists and engineers through its Young Investigator Program
The Air Force Office of Scientific Research today announced that it will award approximately $16.6 million in grants to 57 scientists and engineers from 42 research institutions and small businesses who submitted winning research proposals through the Air Force's Young Investigator Research Program.

Only about half of teenage girls receive HPV vaccine at the CDC's recommended age
A virus is responsible for most cases of cervical cancer but a new study by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston indicates that only about half of the girls receive the vaccine at the recommended age.

New computation method helps identify functional DNA
Striving to unravel and comprehend DNA's biological significance, Cornell University scientists have created a new computational method that can identify positions in the human genome that play a role in the proper functioning of cells, according to a report published Jan.

Thinking locally
The Peruvian Ministry of Education has adopted the 'Blue Planet' education module, developed at the Weizmann Institute of Science.

Light replaces the needle
Empa and the University Hospital Zurich have joined forces to develop a sensor that gages the blood sugar through skin contact.

GOES-West captures birth of Tropical Cyclone Niko in Southern Pacific
NOAA's GOES-West satellite captured the birth of Tropical Cyclone Niko in the Southern Pacific Ocean near French Polynesia.

The 5 strategies scholars use in writing medical review articles
A study in the journal Academic Medicine identifies the five main strategies researchers use in preparing and writing medical review articles.

Kessler Foundation researchers link task length with cognitive fatigue in MS
Kessler Foundation researchers authored new article that provides insight into factors contributing to cognitive fatigue in multiple sclerosis.

Medicaid 'fee bump' to primary care doctors associated with better access to appointments
The increase in Medicaid reimbursement for primary care providers, a key provision of the Affordable Care ActFirst evaluation of Affordable Care Act's Medicaid primary care fee bump shows correlation between higher reimbursement and increased appointment availability, was associated with a 7.7 percentage points increase in new patient appointment availability without longer wait times, according to results of a new 10-state study -- co-authored by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and the Urban Institute, and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation -- published online-first by the New England Journal of Medicine.

What is the current development in nanomedicine for clinical diagnosis and treatment?
Nanomedicine has been advancing rapidly, particularly in the development of novel nano tools for medicine.

Death of a dynamo -- A hard drive from space
Hidden magnetic messages contained within ancient meteorites are providing a unique window into the processes that shaped our solar system, and may give a sneak preview of the fate of the Earth's core as it continues to freeze.

What does a GOP-led Congress mean for science -- and the public?
With Republicans now at the helm, Congress is gearing up to pursue a legislative agenda with potentially profound implications for science and how it informs policies on the environment, energy, health and agriculture.

Four in 10 American children live in low-income families, new report shows
Four out of ten American children live in low-income families, according to latest research from the National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP) at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health.

Optimizing optimization algorithms
Analysis shows how to get the best results when approximating solutions to complex engineering problems.

ASA announces JSM invited sessions schedule
The schedule of 168 invited sessions for the 2015 Joint Statistical Meetings is now posted online, announces the American Statistical Association, the lead organizer for the largest annual meeting of statisticians conducted in North America.

NASA adds up Tropical Storm Mekkhala's drenching rainfall in the Philippines
NASA/JAXA's Global Precipitation Measurement mission can measure rainfall rates from space and its data combined with other satellite data provides are used to calculate rainfall totals.

Not so obvious: Consumers don't just assume bundled products are a better value
Product bundling is a common marketing strategy. According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, retailers need to draw attention to the value of a package deal since consumers prefer products that are packaged individually.

Future Science Group launches open-access journal
Future Science Group has launched Future Science Open, the publisher's first fully open-access journal.

UCSD study shows why protein mutations lead to familial form of Parkinson's disease
Researchers at the San Diego Supercomputer Center at the University of California, San Diego, have shown for the first time why protein mutations lead to the familial form of Parkinson's disease.

The Facebook of plant science
By building PhotosynQ -- a handheld device with sensors and an online data-sharing and analysis platform -- a team of Michigan State University researchers is creating the plant-science equivalent of Facebook.

UTSA adjunct professor receives highest honor from the American Society for Cell Biology
William Brinkley, adjunct professor of biology in the UTSA College of Sciences, was recently honored with the E.

Long-term use of ventricular assist devices induces heart muscle regeneration, study finds
Prolonged use of a left ventricular assist device by patients with heart failure may induce regeneration of heart muscle by preventing oxidative damage to a cell-regulator mechanism, UTSW study finds.

Professor Jonathan Sprent to receive AAI Lifetime Achievement Award
The American Association of Immunologists has selected professor Jonathan Sprent, FAA, FRS, from Sydney's Garvan Institute of Medical Research, to be the 2015 recipient of the AAI Lifetime Achievement Award.

UH Case Medical Center first to offer novel HeartFlow FFR(CT) technology
University Hospitals Case Medical Center is now offering a new, non-invasive test for coronary artery disease designed to help physicians develop the right treatment plan for each patient.

Self-powered intelligent keyboard could provide a new layer of security
By analyzing such parameters as the force applied by key presses and the time interval between them, a new self-powered non-mechanical intelligent keyboard could provide a stronger layer of security for computer users.

Study examines NSAID use, risk of anastomotic failure following surgery
Use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) was associated with an increased risk of anastomotic leak at the surgical junction in patients undergoing nonelective colorectal procedures, according to a report published online by JAMA Surgery.

Goshawk hunt and prey-evasion strategies revealed
Goshawk hunts are swift and deadly. Fixing their prey in their sights, the hawk's entire pursuit can be over in seconds.

Experts call for a rethink on guidelines about children's screen time
The amount of time children spend using screens, such as televisions and computers, on a daily basis exceeds recommended guidelines, according to research published in open access journal BMC Public Health.

New method to generate arbitrary optical pulses
Scientists from the University of Southampton have developed a new technique to generate more powerful, more energy efficient and low-cost pulsed lasers.

USC neuroscientists lead global ENIGMA consortium to crack brain's genetic code
About 300 scientists used more than 30,000 brain scans and DNA samples to find eight gene mutations that affect the size of specific parts of the brain.

Researchers introduce macrosystems approach to study stream ecology
Kansas State University researchers have collaborated to create the Stream Biome Gradient Concept, which is a way to compare streams in different climates and different continents.

Decorative and flexible solar panels become part of interior design
VTT Technical Centre of Finland has developed and utilized a mass production method based on printing technologies allowing the manufacturing of decorative, organic solar panels.

Health consciousness: Do consumers believe healthy food always tastes bad?
Why are health awareness campaigns failing to reduce skyrocketing obesity rates?

Ultra-high pressure processing may increase salmon shelf-life
The researchers found that salmon flesh treated with UHP at levels greater than or equal to 400 MPa improved the color, hardness, and chewiness of the flesh, and inhibited microorganism proliferation, thus increasing shelf life.

Sequestration on shaky ground
A study finds a natural impediment to the long-term sequestration of carbon dioxide.

Seeing is not remembering
People may have to 'turn on' their memories in order to remember even the simplest details of an experience, according to Penn State psychologists.

The Lancet Psychiatry: Video-based therapy might benefit babies at risk of autism
Video-based therapy for families with babies at risk of autism improves infants' engagement, attention and social behavior, and might reduce the likelihood of such children developing autism, according to new research published in The Lancet Psychiatry journal.

INRS acquires specialized equipment to conduct innovative research
With the acquisition of new specialized equipment, INRS researchers Philippe Apparicio, Géraldine Delbès, and Maritza Jaramillo and their teams will be able to advance knowledge and train highly qualified people in the fields of environmental equity, reproductive toxicology, and the treatment of infections.

Fatty acids in fish may shield brain from mercury damage
New findings from research in the Seychelles provide further evidence that the benefits of fish consumption on prenatal development may offset the risks associated with mercury exposure.

Aging societies
The Medical Faculty of the University of Cologne is taking part in the InnoLife project funded by the European Institute for Innovation and Technology.

Link found between pain during or after sexual intercourse and mode of delivery
Operative birth is associated with persisting pain during or after sexual intercourse, known as dyspareunia, suggests a new study published today in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

More realistic physical activity targets needed, say experts
Physical activity guidelines should focus on getting inactive people to do a little activity rather than strive for the entire population to meet the current target of 150 minutes of moderate activity a week, say experts today.

CWRU DNP publishes first dermatology textbook for advance practice clinicians
To help train nurses about dermatology, Margaret Bobonich, DNP, FNP-C, DNCP, FAANP, from Case Western Reserve University's Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing, and Mary Nolen, BC, DCNP, a dermatology nurse at Lahey Hospital and Medical Center in Massachusetts, wrote and published 'Dermatology for Advanced Practice Clinician.'

Buying cars: Do product features matter more than brands?
It is a popular belief among marketers that online searches for brand names are good indicators of which products consumers plan to buy.

Warmer, drier climate altering forests throughout California
Thanks to historical data preserved in UC Berkeley's libraries, campus botanists have been able to compare California tree survey data from the 1920s and '30s with forest service data today.

Case Western Reserve scientists identify proteins likely to trigger psoriasis
Case Western Reserve scientists have taken a huge leap toward identifying root causes of psoriasis, an inflammatory skin condition affecting 125 million people around the world.

Job seekers with 'learning' attitude have more success
A joint study by University of Missouri and Lehigh University researchers found that job seekers with attitudes focused on 'learning' from the job-seeking process will have more success finding their dream jobs.

Messages from space -- hidden magnetic messages uncovered
Geologists from the University of Cambridge uncover hidden magnetic messages from the early solar system in meteorites measured at BESSY II.

Toward a cocaine vaccine to help addicts kick the habit
In their decades-long search for vaccines against drugs of abuse, scientists have hit upon a new approach to annul cocaine's addictive buzz.

Classic psychedelic use protective with regard to psychological distress and suicidality
Classic psychedelics, such as LSD, psilocybin mushrooms and mescaline, previously have been shown to occasion lasting improvements in mental health.

Self-assembled nanotextures create antireflective surface on silicon solar cells
Scientists at Brookhaven National Laboratory show that etching a nanoscale texture onto silicon creates an antireflective surface that works as well as state-of-the-art thin-film multilayer antireflective coatings for solar cells.

Teen girls report less sexual victimization after virtual reality assertiveness training
Teen girls were less likely to report being sexually victimized after learning to assertively resist unwanted sexual overtures and practicing resistance in a realistic virtual environment, a new study finds.

Study maps travel of H7 influenza genes
In a new bioinformatics analysis of the H7N9 influenza virus that has recently infected humans in China, researchers trace the separate phylogenetic histories of the virus's genes, giving a frightening new picture of viruses where the genes are traveling independently in the environment, across large geographic distances and between species, to form 'a new constellation of genes -- a new disease, based not only on H7, but other strains of influenza.'

Oranges versus orange juice: Which one might be better for your health?
Many health advocates advise people to eat an orange and drink water rather than opt for a serving of sugary juice.

Inside the big wormhole
Based on the latest evidence and theories our galaxy could be a huge wormhole (or space-time tunnel, have you seen 'Interstellar?') and, if that were true, it would be 'stable and navigable.' This is the hypothesis put forward in a study published in Annals of Physics and conducted with the participation of SISSA in Trieste.

HiSIM-SOTB, compact transistor model, selected as international industry standard
A new compact transistor model was developed and the framework for realizing a faster design support process and product development for integrated circuits in the ultra-low voltage category was established.

New bacterial language discovered
Bacteria communicate by means of chemical signals and can develop common characteristics through this 'agreement' and also develop their potential pathogenic effects in this way.

Climate change threatens 30 years of sea turtle conservation success
A new University of Central Florida study is sounding the alarm about climate change and its potential impact on more than 30 years of conservation efforts to keep sea turtles around for the next generation.

Study shows how Ebola becomes lethal as it spreads
Researchers from the University of Liverpool, in collaboration with Public Health England, have determined why Ebola virus becomes increasingly lethal as it jumps species.

Scientists find gene vital to central nervous system development
Scientists have identified a gene that helps regulate how well nerves of the central nervous system are insulated, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St.

New book on retinal disorders from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
'Retinal Disorders' from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press reviews recent work on retinal diseases, describing their genetic and molecular basis, their clinical characteristics, and strategies to diagnose and treat them. 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