Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

June 30, 2015
ASHG announces 2015 Award for Excellence in Human Genetics Education
The American Society of Human Genetics has named Robert L.

Lauren Sciences awarded grant by Voices Against Brain Cancer to develop V-Smart Nanomedicine for GBM
Lauren Sciences LLC, the private New York biotechnology company developing breakthrough V-Smart Nanomedicines for brain diseases, announced today the award of a grant by Voices Against Brain Cancer.

Chitosan-coated, chemotherapy-packed nanoparticles may target cancer stem cells
Nanoparticles packed with a clinically used chemotherapy drug and coated with an oligosaccharide derived from the carapace of crustaceans might effectively target and kill cancer stem-like cells, according to a recent study led by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center -- Arthur G.

Report: Careers outside of academia are richly rewarding for Ph.D. physicists
Ten years after graduating, many have found financially solid and meaningful employment in the private sector, according to a new report from the American Institute of Physics.

Graphene flexes its electronic muscles
Flexing graphene may be the most basic way to control its electrical properties, according to calculations by theoretical physicists at Rice University and in Russia.

Women's faces get redder at ovulation, but human eyes can't pick up on it
Past research shows men find female faces more attractive at peak fertility.

Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation announces new Physician-Scientist Training Awards
To help increase the number of physician-scientists, the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation has created the new Damon Runyon Physician-Scientist Training Award, which provides physicians who have earned an M.D. degree and completed clinical specialty fellowship training the opportunity to gain the research experience they need to become leaders in translational and clinical research.

BGI has received accreditation from the College of American Pathologists
BGI announced today that its high-throughput DNA sequencing laboratory in Hong Kong has been accredited by the American College of Pathologists.

Yosemite forest fire example of possible things to come
Forest composition, ground cover and topography are the best predictors of forest fire severity in the Western US, according to Penn State physical geographers who also see that the long history of fire exclusion on federal lands leads to uncharacteristically severe burns and potentially changes the dynamics of forests and their recovery.

A win-win-win-win
With $1.5 million in NSF funding, a group of researchers will study the effects of a novel way of eradicating schistosomiasis.

New study re-writes the rules of carbon analysis: ANU media center
A new study has found analyses of carbon emissions may be misleading as they failed to include the impacts of policies such as trading schemes, emission caps or quotas.

Atomic force microscope advance leads to new breast cancer research
Researchers who developed a high-speed form of atomic force microscopy have shown how to image the physical properties of live breast cancer cells, for the first time revealing details about how deactivation of a key protein may lead to metastasis.

Topical benzoyl peroxide efficacy on Propionibacterium acnes reduction in shoulder surgery
A new paper to be published in The Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery evaluates the effect that topical benzoyl peroxide (BPO), with chlorhexidine skin preparation, has on the presence of Propionibacterium acnes cultured at the time of shoulder surgery.

Bisexual men and women report poorer health than gays, lesbians and heterosexuals
Bisexual men and women report poorer health than gays, lesbians and heterosexuals.

Longer acquaintance levels the romantic playing field
Partners who become romantically involved soon after meeting tend to be more similar in physical attractiveness than partners who get together after knowing each other for a while, according to new findings published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

For women with bipolar disorder, sleep quality affects mood
Poor sleep is associated with negative mood in women with bipolar disorder, according to researchers at Penn State College of Medicine and University of Michigan Medical School.

Osteopathic manipulative therapy significantly improves low back pain in postpartum women
German researchers found osteopathic manipulative therapy decreased postpartum low back pain by over 70 percent in women who had given birth at least three months before beginning treatment, according to a new study published in July issue of the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

New study reveals mechanism regulating methane emissions in freshwater wetlands
Though they occupy a small fraction of the Earth's surface, freshwater wetlands are the largest natural source of methane going into the atmosphere.

Macy Foundation President's Grant supports refugee health education at Georgetown
The Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation has awarded a President's Grant to Georgetown family medicine physician Ranit Mishori, M.D., M.H.S., F.A.A.F.P., to create a comprehensive curriculum to educate health professions students, residents and clinicians about the health needs of immigrants, migrants, torture survivors, asylum seekers and refugees.

Fingerprinting our sense of smell
Weizmann Institute Scientists develop an 'olfactory fingerprint' test that may do more than just identify individuals.

Colon cancer: Taking a step back to move forward
Recent Weizmann Institute studies are revealing a complex picture of cancer progression in which certain genes that drive tumor growth in the earlier stages get suppressed in later stages -- taking a step back to move forward.

UNSW Australia co-hosts the 2015 International Nanomedicine Conference
Advances in nanotechnology are fundamentally changing the future of medicine.

Carnegie Mellon chemists characterize 3-D macroporous hydrogels
Carnegie Mellon University chemists have developed two novel methods to characterize 3-D macroporous hydrogels -- materials that hold great promise for developing 'smart' responsive materials that can be used for catalysts, chemical detectors, tissue engineering scaffolds and absorbents for carbon capture.

Where the wild things aren't: Cats avoid places coyotes roam
Caught in the act: millions of images from citizen scientists show that free-ranging domestic cats do their hunting close to home in neighborhoods and small urban forests, avoiding areas with coyotes.

Nuclea launches strategic partnership with Aelan in field of epigenetics
Nuclea Biotechnologies Inc. announced today that it is partnering with Aelan Cell Technologies Inc. for the development, validation and commercialization of novel biomarker tests and companion diagnostics using human STEM cells as models.

A centipede from hell
An international team of scientists has discovered the deepest underground dwelling centipede.

Two techniques of temporal migraine surgery are 'equally effective'
Two migraine surgery techniques targeting a specific 'trigger site' are both highly effective in reducing the frequency and severity of migraine headaches, according to a randomized trial in the July issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

Suomi-NPP satellite sees formation of Tropical Depression Chan-Hom
NASA-NOAA's Suomi NPP Satellite passed over the newborn ninth tropical depression of the Northwestern Pacific Ocean typhoon season on June 30.

Vision screening in preschool-aged children: Benefit and harm still unclear
No new screening studies were identified in an update search.

Repeated courses of antibiotics may profoundly alter children's development
A new animal study by NYU Langone Medical Center researchers adds to growing evidence that multiple courses of commonly used antibiotics may have a significant impact on children's development.

Omega-3 supplements and antioxidants may help with preclinical Alzheimer's disease
Here's more evidence that fish oil supplementation and antioxidants might be beneficial for at least some people facing Alzheimer's disease: A new report published in the July 2015 issue of The FASEB Journal describes the findings of a very small study in which people with mild clinical impairment, such as those in the very early stages of the disease, saw clearance of the hallmark amyloid-beta protein and reduced inflammation in neurological tissues.

Lack of research funding could leave health care training 'to chance,' says BMJ editorial
Health care education researchers, led by Dr. Julian Archer from Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry, have penned a heartfelt editorial in The BMJ calling for more research funding to support the evidence base for medical training.

Company decision-makers get a manual for building sustainable business models
An electronic manual for company decision-makers has been published, providing companies with guidance concerning the planning and building of sustainable business models and networks.

New model of cosmic stickiness favors 'Big Rip' demise of universe
Vanderbilt University mathematician Marcelo Disconzi, working with physicists Robert Scherrer and Tom Kephart, has come up with a new approach to calculate cosmic viscosity and the formulation favors the 'Big Rip' scenario for the end of the universe.

Research redefines the properties of faults when rock melts
A new discovery in the study of fault slip seeks to redefine our understanding of how melt-bearing faults behave, say scientists at the University of Liverpool.

A high-fat diet may alleviate mitochondrial disease
Salk scientists find that dietary fat, coupled with a natural hormone, can relieve metabolic dysfunction associated with mitochondrial disease in mice.

New study shows South Africans using milk-based paint 49,000 years ago
n international research team led by the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa has discovered a milk-and ochre-based paint dating to 49,000 years ago that inhabitants may have used to adorn themselves with or to decorate stone or wooden slabs.

Hospital-wide program for delirium, alcohol withdrawal and suicide/harm impacts readmission rates
In a new report, clinicians at Brigham and Women's Hospital describe the implementation and effectiveness of a hospital-wide clinical improvement initiative for acute care patients at risk for delirium, alcohol withdrawal and suicide harm and demonstrate its effectiveness in reducing readmission rates.

Major Midwest flood risk underestimated by as much as 5 feet, study finds
As floodwaters surge along major rivers in the midwestern United States, a new study from Washington University in St.

Similarities between embryos and breast tumors identified
It may seem incredulous, but breast tumors may have something in common with embryos... at least in mice, say researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Bow ties and cuttlefish: Researchers gain new insight into a visual super sense
An experiment originally designed to test the visual abilities of octopuses and cuttlefish has given University of Bristol, UK researchers an unprecedented insight into the human ability to perceive polarized light -- the super sense that most of us don't even know we have.

Winners of 2015 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists announced
A chemist who has made important discoveries in both the human brain and sustainable energy, a neurosurgeon who has done pioneering work mapping the 'blueprint' of how humans speak and hear, and a computer scientist who has changed our understanding of the capacity of wireless networks are the three winners of the 2015 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists.

NYU School of Engineering professor honored for contributions to mechanical vibration
The Technical Committee on Vibration and Sound of ASME honored NYU's Maurizio Porfiri for his work in mechanical vibration.

Small RNAs found to play important roles in memory formation
Scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have found that a type of genetic material called 'microRNA' plays surprisingly different roles in the formation of memory in animal models.

Moffitt Cancer Center receives $3.6 million grant to study e-cigarettes
Moffitt Cancer Center received a $3.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the use of electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, over the next five years.

Nationwide study measures short-term spike in July 4 particulate matter
A new NOAA-led study appearing in the journal Atmospheric Environment quantifies the surge in fine particulate matter -- particles that are two and one half microns in diameter (PM2.5) -- on July 4, using observations from the 315 US air quality monitoring sites that operated from 1999 to 2013.

New study identifies organic compounds of potential concern in fracking fluids
A new University of Colorado Boulder framework used to screen hundreds of organic chemical compounds used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, shows that 15 may be of concern as groundwater contaminants based on their toxicity, mobility, persistence and frequency of use.

Pinaverium shows promising results for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome
Pinaverium offers quick and effective relief of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms, according to clinical trial results published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association.

NASA collaborates with DRS Technologies to create mid-infrared detector
NASA scientist Xiaoli Sun and his industry partner have created the world's first photon-counting detector sensitive to the mid-infrared wavelength bands -- a spectral sweet spot for a number of remote-sensing applications, including the detection of greenhouse gases on Earth, Mars and other planetary bodies, as well as ice and frost on comets, asteroids and the moon.

FAU receives $2.1 million to study effectiveness of schizophrenia medication
In patients with severe illnesses such as schizophrenia, the risk for relapse and re-hospitalization is substantially increased following hospitalizations.

Seafood supply altered by climate change
The global supply of seafood is set to change substantially and many people will not be able to enjoy the same quantity and dishes in the future due to climate change and ocean acidification, according to UBC scientists.

Biodegradable, flexible silicon transistors
Researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison have come up with a new solution to alleviate the environmental burden of discarded electronics.

Cardiac survival rates around 6 percent for those occurring outside of a hospital
Cardiac arrest strikes almost 600,000 people each year, killing the vast majority of those individuals, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine.

A single molecule in the building blocks of life
The world is built up of molecules that join together and form different building blocks.

Targeting mistreatment of women during childbirth
In a new systematic review appearing this week in PLOS Medicine, Meghan Bohren and colleagues of the WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research, including HRP, and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health synthesize qualitative and quantitative evidence to form a clearer picture of the extent and types of mistreatment that occurs during childbirth in health facilities.

Oregon study: Minor heart feature may mean trouble at high altitude
A common heart feature long thought to have negligible effects on human health and performance may be problematic at high altitude.

ERC Advanced Grant: University of Southern Denmark sets out to explore deep ocean trenches
A team led by Professor Ronnie N. Glud from University of Southern Denmark has received an ERC Advanced Grant of 3,185,000 euros to carry out a series of ambitious explorations of the deepest parts of the oceans.

Study suggests that a causal pathway may link job stress and sleep disturbances
A new study suggests that there may be a reciprocal, causal pathway between job strain and disturbed sleep, implying that interventions to treat sleep problems may improve work satisfaction.

Sialic acid: A key to unlocking brain disorders
A new report published in the July 2015 issue of The FASEB Journal suggests that a common molecule found in higher animals, including humans, affects brain structure.

Patients with recurrent depression have smaller hippocampi
The brains of people with recurrent depression have a significantly smaller hippocampus -- the part of the brain most associated with forming new memories -- than healthy individuals, a new global study of nearly 9,000 people reveals.

Protein's impact on colorectal cancer is dappled
Researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have discovered a cell signaling pathway that appears to exert some control over initiation and progression of colorectal cancer, the third leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States.

Offering healthier options at carryout stores improves bottom line
A pilot program designed to encourage mom and pop carryout shops in Baltimore to promote and sell healthier menu items not only improved eating habits, but also increased the stores' gross revenue by an average 25 percent, new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research found.

Kessler Foundation awarded $3 million from the N.J. Commission on Brain Injury Research
Kessler Foundation received $3 million in grants from the New Jersey Commission on Brain Injury Research.

Sexual harassment at work not just men against women
More than one in 10 complaints of sexual harassment at work are reported by men, a QUT study has found.

Restored streams take 25 years or longer to recover
New research has found that the number of plant species growing just next to restored streams can take up to 25 years to increase above those channelized during the timber floating era.

Using muons from cosmic rays to find fraying infrastructure
Seeking a better way to identify faulty energy infrastructure before it fails, researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory are using subatomic particles called muons to analyze the thickness of concrete slabs and metal pipes.

New genetic form of obesity and diabetes discovered
Scientists have discovered a new inherited form of obesity and type 2 diabetes in humans.

UW team programs solitary yeast cells to say 'hello' to one another
University of Washington researchers have produced cell-to-cell communication in baker's yeast -- a first step in learning to build multicellular organisms or artificial organs from scratch.

Level I trauma experience prepares surgeons for battle
Soldiers injured during the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have the highest survival rates in history, thanks to the availability of surgeons skilled in combat care.

Pitt leads trial to reduce antibiotic overuse at post-acute and long-term care facilities
The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine will be leading a $1.5 million national trial to examine methods to reduce unnecessary use of antibiotics in post-acute and long-term care facilities.

ASTRO announces new journal Advances in Radiation Oncology and Editor Robert C. Miller, M.D.
The American Society for Radiation Oncology is pleased to announce the launch of its new open-access journal, Advances in Radiation Oncology, and the selection of its Founding Editor, Robert C.

Human urine helps prevent bacteria from sticking to bladder cells
Human urine contains factors that prevent a common culprit in urinary tract infections (UTIs), uropathogenic Escherichia coli bacteria, from properly attaching to bladder cells, a necessary step for infection.

Friction reduction breakthrough is no snake oil
Snake skin inspired surfaces smash records, providing an astonishing 40 percent friction reduction in tests of high performance materials.

Earthquakes in western Solomon Islands have long history, study shows
Researchers have found that parts of the western Solomon Islands, a region thought to be free of large earthquakes until an 8.1 magnitude quake devastated the area in 2007, have a long history of big seismic events.

Physical study may give boost to hydrogen cars
A new study of hydrogen storage material magnesium hydride reveals path to better performance, possibly paving way toward better future fuel tanks.

Epidemic of obesity and overweight linked to increased food energy supply
This study investigates the associations between changes in national food energy supply and average population body weight in 24 high-, 27 middle- and 18 low-income countries.

New book offers insider perspectives of Teach for America
New book offers troubling look inside Teach for America. Nineteen alumni of TFA, a former TFA staff member and a researcher discuss the organization's training and diversity programs, corporate culture, and possible displacement of veteran teachers in high-need schools.

State of our countryside: Land use map of United Kingdom reveals large-scale changes in environment
A University of Leicester free land cover map of the UK reveals national loss of habitats and agricultural land.

UGA researcher leads comprehensive international study on folate
A University of Georgia researcher is lead author on an international paper on folate biomarkers as part of an initiative to provide evidence-based guidance for the global nutrition and public health community.

Water: The province of provinces
In a paper recently published in the International Journal of Water, civil engineering graduate Ryan Calder evaluates claims that more centralized US-style regulation of drinking water would improve outcomes for Canadians.

Cheek muscles hold up better than leg muscles in space
Muscles need gravity to maintain optimal health, and when they do not have it, they deteriorate.

Does radiation from X-rays and CT scans really cause cancer?
In recent years, there has been widespread media coverage of studies purporting to show that radiation from X-rays, CT scans and other medical imaging causes cancer.

Ocean algae will cope well in varying climates, study shows
Tiny marine algae that play a critical role in supporting life on Earth may be better equipped to deal with future climate change than previously expected, research shows.

To shed weight, go vegan
People on a vegetarian diet, and especially those following a vegan one that includes no animal products, see better results than dieters on other weight-reducing plans.

Scientists unravel elusive structure of HIV protein
Globally, about 35 million people are living with HIV, which constantly adapts and mutates creating challenges for researchers.

NASA missions monitor a waking black hole
NASA's Swift satellite detected a rising tide of high-energy X-rays from the constellation Cygnus on June 15, just before 2:32 p.m.

New CMI process recycles magnets from factory floor
A new recycling method developed by scientists at the Critical Materials Institute, a US Department of Energy Innovation Hub led by the Ames Laboratory, recovers valuable rare-earth magnetic material from manufacturing waste and creates useful magnets out of it.

New cardiac arrest recommendations: Increased CPR/AED training will improve survival rates
In response to a new Institute of Medicine report on improving cardiac arrest survival rates, the Red Cross is taking a key first step in convening those who can make a significant difference in strengthening the entire system of response to cardiac arrest.

Study finds males may contribute to offspring's mental development before pregnancy
A new study from Indiana University provides evidence in mice that males may play a positive role in the development of offspring's brains starting before pregnancy.

Hantaviruses are highly dependent on cell membrane cholesterol to infect humans
Hantaviruses use cholesterol in cell walls to gain access into cells and infect humans, according to laboratory research published this week in mBio®, the online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

Location isn't everything but timing is for certain spawning fish
The larvae of some species of reef fish appear to survive better depending on the timing of when they were spawned, according to new research from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis.

Tree Nut Council-funded study links nuts to lower body weight and risk of obesity
In a study published this week in Nutrition Journal, researchers compared risk factors for heart disease and metabolic syndrome of tree nut consumers versus those who did not consume tree nuts.

Research reveals new insights into a key antibiotic target in the fight against TB
Scientists at the University of Sussex in the UK have unraveled a key process in the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, potentially paving the way for new antibiotics to fight the disease.

NASA sees new depression forms near Solomon Islands
The Southern Pacific Ocean Tropical Cyclone Season just got an extension with the birth of a new tropical depression near the Solomon Islands.

Vitamin A supplementation may cause the immune system to 'forget' past infections
Although vitamin A supplementation can have profound health benefits when someone is deficient, new evidence is emerging to show that vitamin A supplementation above and beyond normal levels may have negative health consequences.

Scientists propose new model of mysterious barrier to fusion known as the 'density limit'
PPPL researchers have developed a detailed model of the source of a puzzling limitation on fusion reactions.

Water used for hydraulic fracturing varies widely across United States
The amount of water required to hydraulically fracture oil and gas wells varies widely across the country, according to the first national-scale analysis and map of hydraulic fracturing water usage detailed in a new study accepted for publication in Water Resources Research, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

Changing fruit and vegetable consumption among children and healthy baby food safety curriculum
The Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior announces the 2015 Best Article and Best Great Educational Material awards, which will presented at the Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior annual conference, 'Creativity and Innovation in Nutrition Education,' in Pittsburgh, Pa., July 25-28, 2015.

Seeing a supernova in a new light
Type Ia supernovae are the 'standard candles' astrophysicists use to chart distance in the Universe.

Europeans have unknowingly contributed to the spread of invasive plant species in the USA
The role of plant traits might be overestimated by biologists in studies on plant invasiveness.

Innovative imaging study shows that the spinal cord learns on its own
The spinal cord engages in its own learning of motor tasks independent of the brain, according to an innovative imaging study publishing on June 30 in open-access journal PLOS Biology.

How small genetic change in Yersinia pestis changed human history
While studying Yersinia pestis, the bacteria responsible for epidemics of plague such as the Black Death, scientists found a single small genetic change that fundamentally influenced the evolution of the deadly pathogen, and thus the course of human history.

Hello, gorgeous! 'Pulse' technology may replenish skin's collagen
A team of Tel Aviv University and Harvard Medical School researchers has devised a non-invasive technique that harnesses pulsed electric fields to generate new skin tissue growth.

Citrus fruit consumption may be associated with increased melanoma risk
A new analysis of dietary patterns among more than 100,000 Americans suggests that frequent consumption of citrus -- namely whole grapefruit and orange juice -- may be associated with an increased risk of melanoma.

Leicester pioneers introduce new imaging autopsy service to the NHS
University of Leicester and Leicester's Hospitals researchers introduce novel new service to NHS in Leicestershire.

Spouses & relatives of celiac disease patients at risk for autoimmune diseases
Both spouses and first-degree relatives of patients with celiac disease are at increased risk of nonceliac autoimmune disease, according to a study in the July issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association.

Virus-carrying mosquitoes are more widespread than ever, and spreading
Scientists behind the first global distribution maps of two species of dengue and chikungunya-carrying mosquitoes warn they are spreading to new areas where they could cause disease. 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