Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

March 06, 2015
New findings on 'key players' in brain inflammation
Inflammatory processes occur in the brain in conjunction with stroke and neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

Loyola receives $735,516 from the American Heart Association for cardiac research
The American Heart Association awarded Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine $735,516 in 2014 in new and continuing grants for cardiac research.

Chromosomal rearrangement is the key to progress against aggressive infant leukemia
The St. Jude Children's Research Hospital -- Washington University Pediatric Cancer Genome Project reports that a highly aggressive form of leukemia in infants has surprisingly few mutations beyond the chromosomal rearrangement that affects the MLL gene.

Oncologists see gene expression profiling tests as helpful but have concerns
Oncologists praise gene expression profiling tests as a decision-making tool for women with early-stage breast cancer but also have significant reservations.

The green lungs of our planet are changing
Over recent decades, the growing seasons have changed everywhere around the world.

Letrozole is a promising new treatment of male infertility, researcher says
A letrozole pill once a week restored fertility in obese, infertile men and led to their partners giving birth to two full-term, healthy babies, according to a new study from Canada.

Long-term effects of obesity surgery on adolescent skeleton are favorable
The skeletons of obese adolescents are usually more dense than those of normal weight teens, but after gastric bypass surgery, most return to normal density within two years, a new study finds.

Maternal age at childbirth may affect glucose metabolism in their adult male children
A mother's age at childbirth may affect her male baby's birth weight as well as his adult glucose metabolism, new research shows.

Squeezing out new science from material interfaces
With more than five times the thermal conductivity of copper, diamond is the ultimate heat spreader.

Teenage TV audiences and energy drink advertisements
Researchers at Dartmouth College examined a database of television advertisements broadcast between March 2012 and February 2013 on 139 network and cable channels and found that more than 608 hours of advertisements for energy drinks were aired.

NASA's Hubble discovers four images of same supernova split by cosmic lens
Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have spotted for the first time a distant supernova split into four images.

Is the tasty blue crab's natural range creeping north?
Scientists have observed the Atlantic (or Chesapeake) blue crab, a commercially important species, moving north of its native range into the Gulf of Maine.

Fueling the US innovation economy: New study shows innovation impacts from federal R&D
Federally funded research has significant downstream economic benefit through patent generations; biotechnology programs at the National Institutes of Health are the government's most innovative, according to new analysis completed by Battelle TPP.

Center for Dairy Research turns yogurt waste into new products
With exploding consumer demand for Greek yogurt, production is up.

Pharmacist survey shows huge growth in compounded menopausal hormone therapy
Among prescriptions filled for menopausal hormone therapy in the US, almost half now are custom-compounded 'bioidentical' hormones, according to analysis of a recent survey of nearly 500 pharmacists.

Infant growth affected by exposure to environmental pollutants
Even though the levels of two environmental pollutants have declined over the last 20 years, they may still have adverse effects on children's development, according to a new study by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Sap-feeding butterflies join ranks of natural phenomenon, the Golden Ratio
Researchers at Kent State University observed that the coiling action of the butterfly proboscis, a tube-like 'mouth' that many butterflies and moths use to feed on fluids, resembled a spiral similar to that of the Golden Ratio, and decided to investigate.

Who am I? New study links early family experiences, self-esteem with self-clarity
Although some children emerge from cold and neglectful family environments as adults with high self-esteem, a new University at Buffalo study suggests these people may still be at a relative disadvantage in life, with a foggier sense of who they are.

High-normal thyroid hormone level in pregnancy may affect fetal brain development
A new study finds that not only low but also high maternal thyroid hormone levels during early pregnancy may significantly lower the infant's IQ later in childhood.

EARTH Magazine: El Niño disaster stunted children's growth
Children born during, and up to three years after, the devastating 1997-1998 El Niño event in northern Peru were found to be shorter than their peers in a new study covered in EARTH Magazine.

Federal agencies award UT Arlington's TMAC $6.7 million to bolster manufacturing
UT Arlington's TMAC, formerly the Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center, has won a five-year, $33.5 million Commerce Department award to manage Manufacturing Extension Partnership centers to help small and mid-sized manufacturers across the state.

Freeze! Watching alloys change from liquid to solid could lead to better metals
A recent investigation aboard the International Space Station contributed to our understanding of the mechanism behind liquids turning to solids.

Race/ethnicity sometimes associated with overuse of medical care
Racial and ethnic disparities in the receipt of health care -- typically referring to minorities not receiving needed care -- are well known.

Researchers develop first validated method of detecting drugs of abuse in exhaled breath
A group of researchers from the Department of Laboratory Medicine at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden have worked on developing a more donor-friendly alternative to urine testing for drugs by focusing on exhaled breath.

Investigational osteoporosis drug, abaloparatide, lowers fracture risk
Abaloparatide-SC, an injectable drug being studied for the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis, reduces the rate of new spinal fractures by a statistically significant 86 percent and as well as statistically significant reductions in the fracture rate at other parts of the body, a phase 3 clinical trial finds.

ORNL microscopy directly images problematic lithium dendrites in batteries
Scientists have captured the first real-time nanoscale images of lithium dendrite structures known to degrade lithium-ion batteries.

Chemists develop new way to make cost-effective material for electricity storage
University of British Columbia researchers have found a new way to make state-of-the-art materials for energy storage using a cheap lamp from the hardware store.

ASH report: 'Systems-based' hematologist is new way to provide hematology expertise
A report released today from the American Society of Hematology in its journal, Blood, presents an innovative, sustainable new role for hematologists, particularly those specializing in non-malignant blood diseases, for today's rapidly changing US health-care system.

Boston Medical Center to play key role in back pain treatment study
Boston Medical Center (BMC) researchers are part of a national clinical trial that will examine how best to treat acute low back pain and potentially prevent it from being chronic.

Experimental herpes vaccine upends traditional approach and shows promise
Scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine have designed a new type of vaccine that could be the first-ever for preventing genital herpes -- one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases, affecting 500 million people worldwide.

Exploring new chemical paradigm with the theory of nonadiabatic electron dynamics
This volume offers a clear perspective of the relevant ideas and methodology relevant to the chemical theory of the next generation beyond the Born-Oppenheimer paradigm.

BPA harms dental enamel in young animals, mimicking human tooth defect
A tooth enamel abnormality in children, molar incisor hypomineralization, may result from exposure to the industrial chemical bisphenol A, authors of a new study conclude after finding similar damage to the dental enamel of rats that received BPA.

ABC transporters explored in UK conference
ABC transporters -- the protein superfamily involved in tumor resistance, cystic fibrosis and numerous inherited diseases -- will be explored in an upcoming UK conference.

A systems approach elucidates the mechanisms of action of traditional oriental medicine
A research team led by Distinguished Professor Sang Yup Lee at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology has focused on structural similarities between compounds in TOM and human metabolites to help explain TOM's mechanisms of action.

New tool aids US conservation and management of whales, dolphins and porpoises
Researchers have identified more than 100 areas within US waters that should be considered biologically important when making management and regulatory decisions about human activities that could affect whales, dolphins and porpoises.

Stress reduction may reduce fasting glucose in overweight and obese women
A treatment known as mindfulness-based stress reduction may decrease fasting glucose and improve quality of life in overweight and obese women, new research suggests.

Pressure is on to find the cause for vision changes in space
One of the goals of the Fluid Shifts investigation, launching to the space station this spring, is to test the relationship between fluid shifts to the upper body and a pattern NASA calls visual impairment and intracranial pressure syndrome.

People with anorexia and body dysmorphic disorder have similar brain anomalies
People with anorexia nervosa and with body dysmorphic disorder have similar abnormalities in their brains that affect their ability to process visual information, a new UCLA study reveals.

Review article provides new insights on how tumors metastasize
In a review article recently published in the journal Clinical and Translational Medicine, researchers from Boston University School of Medicine shed new light on the underlying processes of tumor metastasis and highlight the role of epigenetics in this process.

In chronic heart failure, monitoring calcitriol may help prevent death
In patients with chronic heart failure, the vitamin D metabolite 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D), also called calcitriol, and its ratio to parathyroid hormone (PTH 1-84) may help predict cardiovascular death; and patients with decreased calcitriol and decreased ratio of calcitriol to PTH might benefit from more aggressive supplementation, a new study finds.

UTHealth awarded $3.5 million to develop treatments for extremely lethal cancers
Scientists at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston have been awarded $3,481,666 by the State of Texas to develop innovative treatments for several of the most lethal types of cancer including pancreatic, colon and lung.

Radical vaccine design effective against herpes viruses
Herpes simplex virus infections are an enormous global health problem and there is currently no viable vaccine.

Parasite infection poses a greater risk for African under-fives
Children under five living in sub-Saharan Africa are at greater risk than older children of developing a long-term parasitic disease, research suggests.

NASA sees Tropical Cyclone 15S meandering in Mozambique Channel
Tropical Cyclone 15S continued to meander in the Mozambique Channel of the Indian Ocean when NASA's Aqua satellite passed overhead and captured a picture of it.

UK must invest in science for a successful nation
The UK needs to increase its investment in science and engineering research if it is to continue to be a successful nation.

Bariatric surgery patients lose less weight depending on their intestinal bacteria
A new study finds that after weight-loss surgery, people whose breath has high concentrations of both hydrogen and methane gases have a lower percentage weight loss than other bariatric surgery patients do.

Feeling sleepy? Might be the melatonin
Melatonin supplements are commonly used as sleep aids; however, our bodies also make melatonin naturally, and until a recent Caltech study using zebrafish, no one knew how -- or even if -- this melatonin contributed to our natural sleep.

Risk of breast cancer in transgender persons -- a study of veterans
A study of breast cancer in transgender veterans has identified 10 new cases, increasing the total number of published cases in both female-to-male and male-to-female transgender persons.

Most men with borderline testosterone levels may have depression
Men with borderline testosterone levels have higher rates of depression and depressive symptoms than the general population, new research finds.

Study investigates conflict of interest in biomedical research proposals
New research from the American Institute of Biological Sciences found that peer review managers play an important role in identifying potential conflicts of interest in biomedical research grant peer reviews.

Graphene meets heat waves
EPFL researchers have shed new light on the fundamental mechanisms of heat dissipation in graphene and other two-dimensional materials.

ASU researchers explore longer life cycle for batteries
Arizona State University researchers are exploring new energy storage technology that could give the battery an even longer life cycle.

The brain treats real and imaginary objects in the same way
The human brain can select relevant objects from a flood of information and edit out what is irrelevant.

A new tool for detecting and destroying norovirus
Norovirus infection is the most common cause of viral gastroenteritis, or 'stomach flu.' A research team at the German Cancer Research Center recently produced 'nanobodies' that could be used to better characterize the structural makeup of the virus.

Menopausal hormone therapy does not affect the risk of dying, study shows
Menopausal hormone therapy does not have a significant effect on death, according to a new review of the medical literature published over the past three decades.

Habitat degradation and climate shifts impact survival of the white-collared manakin
To better understand the interacting effects of habitat degradation and climate on bird populations, researchers from the US Forest Service Pacific Southwest Research Station, Klamath Bird Observatory, and Costa Rica Bird Observatories spent 12 years studying the white-collared manakin, a fruit-eating tropical bird, in mature and young forests along the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica.

Popular antioxidant likely ineffective, study finds
The popular dietary supplement ubiquinone, also known as Coenzyme Q10, is widely believed to function as an antioxidant, protecting cells against damage from free radicals.

Brain structure varies depending on how trusting people are of others, study shows
A recent study from the University of Georgia shows differences in brain structure according to how trusting people are of others.

Workplace lifestyle intervention program improves health
A healthy lifestyle intervention program administered at the workplace and developed by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health significantly reduces risk factors for diabetes and heart disease, according to a new study.

Obese females who are most unlikely to lose weight are most in need of losing it
In obese females, a close relationship may exist between their disinhibition (detrimental eating and behavioral characteristics) that limits successful weight loss, and impaired metabolism, new research shows.

M-MDSCs shut down arthritis in mouse model of the disease
Using a mouse model of rheumatoid arthritis, scientists have discovered that a form of cellular immunotherapy by intravenous administration of monocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells, or M-MDSCs, might be an effective treatment for the disease in humans.

Moves to automate identification of Saimaa ringed seals
Moves are being made to automate the identification of Saimaa ringed seals.

Have a sense of purpose in life? It may protect your heart
Having a high sense of purpose in life may lower your risk of heart disease and stroke, according to a new study led by researchers at Mount Sinai St.

NIH-led study to assess community-based hepatitis C treatment in Washington, D.C.
Officials from NIH and the city of Washington, D.C., launched a clinical trial to examine whether primary care physicians and other health care providers, such as nurse practitioners and physician assistants, can use a new antiviral therapy as effectively as specialist physicians to treat people with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection.

Endocrine disruptors cause fatty liver
Exposure to low doses of hormone-disrupting chemicals early in life can alter gene expression in the liver as well as liver function, increasing the susceptibility to obesity and other metabolic diseases in adulthood, a new study finds.

Onion extract may improve high blood sugar and cholesterol
The extract of onion bulb, Allium cepa, strongly lowered high blood glucose (sugar) and total cholesterol levels in diabetic rats when given with the antidiabetic drug metformin, according to a new study.

New book explores acceptance and mindfulness therapy for psychosis
In his new book titled 'Incorporating Acceptance and Mindfulness into the Treatment of Psychosis: Current Trends and Future Directions,' editor Brandon Gaudiano, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist at Butler Hospital and faculty member in the Department of Psychiatry & Human Behavior at Brown University, provides a comprehensive look at the history and application of mindfulness and acceptance psychotherapies in the treatment of psychotic disorders, including schizophrenia.

IUPUI study: How alcohol hijacks brain's reward system
With the support of a $545,000 three-year grant from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, researchers from the School of Science at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis are conducting research on how the brain's reward system -- the circuitry that helps regulate the body's ability to feel pleasure -- is hijacked by alcohol.

Quitting smoking has favorable metabolic effects
People who quit smoking have improved metabolic effects, a new study finds.

Africa, from a CATS point of view
From Saharan dust storms to icy clouds to smoke on the opposite side of the continent, the first image from NASA's newest cloud- and aerosol-measuring instrument, CATS, provides a profile of the atmosphere above Africa. 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