Selasa, 29 Maret 2011

ScienceDaily Top Science Headlines

for Tuesday, March 29, 2011

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Human virus linked to deaths of endangered mountain gorillas; Finding confirms that serious diseases can pass to gorillas from people (March 29, 2011) -- For the first time, a virus that causes respiratory disease in humans has been linked to the deaths of wild mountain gorillas, reports a team of researchers in the United States and Africa. ... > full story

Viral replicase points to potential cancer therapy (March 29, 2011) -- Alpha viruses, such as Sindbis virus, carry their genetic information on a single strand of RNA. They use a protein, replicase, to produce double stranded RNA (dsRNA) inside infected cells, which initiates the host's immune response. New research demonstrates that an artificial plasmid coding for the replicase genes of Sindbis virus causes regression and destruction of lung cancer, or melanoma, cells in mice. ... > full story

No longer pining for organic molecules to make particles in the air (March 29, 2011) -- The fresh scent of pine has helped atmospheric scientists find missing sources of organic molecules in the air -- which, it could well turn out, aren't missing after all. Researchers have now found that particles containing compounds such as those given off by pine trees evaporate more than 100 times slower than expected by current air-quality models. ... > full story

Follow-up program helps detect melanoma earlier in high-risk patients (March 29, 2011) -- A follow-up program for patients at high risk of developing skin cancer appears to be associated with the detection of melanomas at early stages and with good prognosis, according to a new study. ... > full story

Even Canadian rocks are different: Sedimentary differences on either side of border date back 120 million years (March 29, 2011) -- Canadians have always seen themselves as separate and distinct from their American neighbors to the south, and now they have geological proof. New research shows that rock formations roughly along the same political boundary as the two North American countries formed as early as 120 million years ago. ... > full story

Malaria as a complication to landmines and war injuries (March 29, 2011) -- Malaria can complicate the course of disease in poor farmers with landmine injuries in underdeveloped countries, where both malaria and war injuries are frequent causes of illness and death. New research charts the extent and effect of malaria on war-injured people and studied the potential for preventing them contracting the disease. ... > full story

Will we hear the light? Surprising discovery that infrared can activate heart and ear cells (March 29, 2011) -- Scientists have used invisible infrared light to make rat heart cells contract and toadfish inner-ear cells send signals to the brain. The discovery someday might improve cochlear implants for deafness and lead to devices to restore vision, maintain balance and treat movement disorders like Parkinson's. ... > full story

Predicting serious drug side effects before they occur (March 29, 2011) -- All medications have side-effects from common aspirin to herbal remedies and from standard anticancer drugs to experimental immunosuppressants. However, predicting important side effects, serious adverse drug reactions, ADRs, is with current understanding almost impossible. However, a neural network technology trained with past data could give drug companies and healthcare workers a new tool to spot the potential for ADRs with any given medication. ... > full story

Pioneering treatment could help people with severe depression (March 29, 2011) -- Pioneering neurosurgical treatment, which very accurately targets brain networks involved in depression, could help people who suffer with severe and intractable depression. ... > full story

Many elderly men are undergoing unnecessary PSA screenings, researchers find (March 29, 2011) -- A new study on the use of prostate-specific antigen (PSA)-based prostate cancer screening in the United States found that many elderly men may be undergoing unnecessary prostate cancer screenings. Using data from surveys conducted in 2000 and 2005, researchers report that nearly half of men in their seventies underwent PSA screening in the past year -- almost double the screening rate of men in their early fifties, who are more likely to benefit from early prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment. Further, men aged 85 and older were screened just as often as men in their early fifties. ... > full story

First applications of Europe's Galileo satellite nagivation system showcased (March 29, 2011) -- The first satellites of the the European navigation system Galileo are to be in position in the year 2012 and start their work. Fraunhofer Galileo Labs are showcasing the first applications that use new, improved possibilities provided by satellite navigation. ... > full story

Most U.S. states unclear about storage, use of babies' blood samples, new study finds (March 29, 2011) -- State laws and policies governing the storage and use of surplus blood samples taken from newborns for routine health screenings range from explicit to non-existent, leaving many parents ill-informed about how their babies' left over blood might be used, according to a new article. ... > full story

No two of us are alike -- even identical twins: Pinpointing genetic determinants of schizophrenia (March 28, 2011) -- Just like snowflakes, no two people are alike, even if they're identical twins according to new genetic research. Scientists have been working to determine the genetic sequencing of schizophrenia using identical or monozygotic twins. ... > full story

Acute myeloid leukemia: Researchers find genetic conspirators (March 28, 2011) -- Researchers have described how the most common gene mutation found in acute myeloid leukemia starts the process of cancer development and how it can cooperate with other mutations to cause full-blown leukemia. The researchers suggest that three critical steps can transform normal blood cells into leukemic ones. By charting the route towards cancer, the study identifies processes that might could be targets for new treatments for patients with acute myeloid leukemia. ... > full story

How do plants fight disease? Breakthrough research offers a clue (March 28, 2011) -- How exactly bacterial pathogens cause diseases in plants remains a mystery and continues to frustrate scientists working to solve this problem. Now scientists have performed research on the soybean plant in the lab that makes major inroads into our understanding of plant-pathogen interactions, a rapidly developing area among the plant sciences. ... > full story

Some women worry too much about breast cancer returning, study finds (March 28, 2011) -- Most women face only a small risk of breast cancer coming back after they complete their treatment. Yet a new study finds that nearly half of Latinas who speak little English expressed a great deal of worry about recurrence. ... > full story

Dark side of spring? Pollution in our melting snow (March 28, 2011) -- With birds chirping and temperatures warming, spring is finally in the air. But for environmental chemist Torsten Meyer, springtime has a dark side. ... > full story

Chemists play important roles as advisers for science-based television shows, movies (March 28, 2011) -- Producers and writers for several popular medical and science fiction television shows like House, Breaking Bad, and Zula Patrol -- major sources of information about science and technology for millions of people -- say they do strive for scientific accuracy. ... > full story

Scientists trace violent death of Iron Age man (March 28, 2011) -- An Iron Age man whose skull and brain was unearthed during excavations at the University of York was the victim of a gruesome ritual killing, according to new research. ... > full story

Cancer risk of backscatter airport scanners is low, analysis suggests (March 28, 2011) -- Calculations by researchers estimate that the cancer risk associated with one type of airport security scanners is low based on the amount of radiation these devices emit, as long as they are operated and function correctly. ... > full story

Twinkle, twinkle, quantum dot: New particles can change colors and tag molecules (March 28, 2011) -- Engineers have invented a new kind of nano-particle that shines in different colors to tag molecules in biomedical tests. These tiny plastic nano-particles are stuffed with even tinier bits of electronics called quantum dots. Like little traffic lights, the particles glow brightly in red, yellow, or green, so researchers can easily track molecules under a microscope. ... > full story

Taking blood pressure to new lows -- with lasting results (March 28, 2011) -- Interventional radiologists have completed the first human randomized controlled trial of a procedure that uses high-frequency energy to deactivate the nerves near the kidneys (or in the renal artery) that are linked to high blood pressure. These results confirm that this may be an effective therapy for reducing and controlling resistant hypertension when current medications have failed. ... > full story

New trash-to-treasure process turns landfill nuisance into plastic (March 28, 2011) -- With billions of pounds of meat and bone meal going to waste in landfills after a government ban on its use in cattle feed, scientists have described development of a process for using that so-called meat and bone meal to make partially biodegradable plastic that does not require raw materials made from oil or natural gas. ... > full story

Deep-sea volcanoes don't just produce lava flows, they also explode (March 28, 2011) -- Most deep-sea volcanoes produce effusive lava flows rather than explosive eruptions, both because the levels of magmatic gas tend to be low, and because the volcanoes are under a lot of pressure from the surrounding water. But by using an ion microprobe, researchers have now proved that explosive eruptions can also occur. ... > full story

Possible new target for treatment of multiple sclerosis (March 28, 2011) -- Multiple sclerosis is a disabling autoimmune disease in which nerve fibers are attacked by the patient's own immune system. Researchers have now identified a new mechanism that contributes to nerve fiber damage -- and shown that this damage can be reversed. ... > full story

Blocking ship-borne bioinvaders before they dock (March 28, 2011) -- The global economy depends on marine transportation. But in addition to cargo, the world's 50,000-plus commercial ships carry tiny stowaways that can cause huge problems for the environment and economy. A new model will facilitate accurate screening of vessels for dangerous species before they unload. ... > full story

Cancer drug shows promise for treating scleroderma (March 28, 2011) -- A drug approved to treat certain types of cancer has shown promising results in the treatment of patients with scleroderma, according to results from an open-label Phase II trial. While the drug's efficacy must be demonstrated in a Phase III trial, the gold standard for testing a drug, researchers are optimistic that Gleevec could potentially be a weapon against the chronic connective tissue disease for which a treatment has remained elusive. ... > full story

Huge potential of nanocrystals to raise efficiency in fuel cells (March 28, 2011) -- The addition of extremely small crystals to solid electrolyte material has the potential to considerably raise the efficiency of fuel cells. ... > full story

Genetic link to attempted suicide identified (March 28, 2011) -- A study of thousands of people with bipolar disorder suggests that genetic risk factors may influence the decision to attempt suicide. Researchers have identified a small region on chromosome 2 that is associated with increased risk for attempted suicide. This small region contains four genes, including the ACP1 gene, and the researchers found more than normal levels of the ACP1 protein in the brains of people who had committed suicide. This protein is thought to influence the same biological pathway as lithium, a medication known to reduce the rate of suicidal behavior. ... > full story

Remarkable fossil sea creature -- 525 million years old -- shows soft parts of body including tentacles (March 28, 2011) -- Researchers have discovered a remarkable fossil which sheds new light on an important group of primitive sea creatures. The 525-million-year-old fossil belongs to a group of tentacle-bearing creatures which lived inside hard tubes. Previously only the tubes have been seen in detail, but this new specimen clearly shows the soft parts of the body including tentacles for feeding. ... > full story

Scientists link DNA 'end-caps' length to diabetes risk; New role for short telomeres (March 28, 2011) -- New evidence has emerged from studies in mice that short telomeres or "caps" at the ends of chromosomes may predispose people to age-related diabetes, according to scientists. ... > full story

How bees learn which odors to follow (March 28, 2011) -- Scientists have traced odor memory to a certain area of the bee brain. How successful bees are in their search for food depends largely on how well they can, based on their odors, detect nectar-rich flowers from a distance and distinguish them from less promising plants. Researchers have investigated how and whether bees can recognize a relationship between the odor and nectar of a particular flowers and whether this association is localized in a certain area of the bee brain. ... > full story

Outcomes improved by longer delays between heart attacks and elective surgeries, study finds (March 28, 2011) -- Recent heart attack patients should wait longer than currently recommended before undergoing elective surgery, a new study suggests. ... > full story

'Green' cars could be made from pineapples and bananas (March 28, 2011) -- Your next new car hopefully won't be a lemon. But it could be a pineapple or a banana. Scientists in Brazil have developed a more effective way to use fibers from these and other plants in a new generation of automotive plastics that are stronger, lighter, and more eco-friendly than plastics now in use. Their work could lead to stronger and more sustainable materials for cars and other products. ... > full story

Babies who sleep with smoker parents exhibit high nicotine levels (March 28, 2011) -- "Third-hand smoke" stuck to skin or clothing is responsible for the high nicotine levels seen in babies who share a bedroom with their smoker parents, according to a new study in Spain. The study also shows that ventilating bedrooms is not effective in reducing the levels of toxins from passive smoking. ... > full story

Debut of the first practical 'artificial leaf' (March 28, 2011) -- Scientists have claimed one of the milestones in the drive for sustainable energy -- development of the first practical artificial leaf. Researchers have developed an advanced solar cell the size of a poker card that mimics the process, called photosynthesis, that green plants use to convert sunlight and water into energy. ... > full story

Researchers tie Parkinson's drugs to impulse control problems (March 28, 2011) -- Researchers found that dopamine agonists used in treating Parkinson's disease result in impulse control disorders in as many as 22 percent of patients. ... > full story

Large regional changes in farmland area predicted (March 28, 2011) -- The effects of climate change and population growth on agricultural land area vary from region to region, according to a new study. Regions with relative high latitudes -- China, Russia and the US -- could see a significant increase in arable land in coming years, but Africa, Europe and India and South America could lose land area. ... > full story

When you cough up green or yellow phlegm you need to be prescribed antibiotics, right? (March 28, 2011) -- Prescribing antibiotics for patients with discoloured phlegm caused by acute cough has little or no effect on alleviating symptoms and recovery, a new study in the UK has found. ... > full story

Taming the flame: Electrical wave 'blaster' could provide new way to extinguish fires (March 28, 2011) -- An exciting discovery could underpin a new genre of fire-fighting devices, including sprinkler systems that suppress fires not with water, but with zaps of electric current, without soaking and irreparably damaging the contents of a home, business, or other structure. ... > full story

Why some children are harmed by mother's alcohol, but others aren't (March 28, 2011) -- Why does one woman who drinks alcohol during pregnancy have a child with behavioral or learning problems while another woman who also drinks has a child without these problems? New research shows one answer is a gene variation passed on by the mother to her son. This makes a fetus vulnerable to even moderate alcohol exposure by disrupting the balance of thyroid hormones in the brain. In the future, vulnerable women could be identified and given dietary supplements to correct the problem. ... > full story

From cotton candy to rock: New evidence about beginnings of the solar system (March 28, 2011) -- The earliest rocks in our solar system were more like cotton candy than the hard rock that we know today, according to new research. ... > full story

Advanced technology reveals activity of single neurons during seizures (March 28, 2011) -- The first study to examine the activity of hundreds of individual human brain cells during seizures has found that seizures begin with extremely diverse neuronal activity, contrary to the classic view that they are characterized by massively synchronized activity. The researchers also observed pre-seizure changes in neuronal activity both in the cells where seizures originate and in nearby cells. ... > full story

Walnuts are top nut for heart-healthy antioxidants (March 28, 2011) -- A new scientific study positions walnuts in the number one slot among a family of foods that lay claim to being among Mother Nature's most nearly perfect packaged foods: Tree and ground nuts. A new analysis shows that walnuts have a combination of more healthful antioxidants and higher quality antioxidants than any other nut. ... > full story

Blood pressure control system found in kidney's structural units (March 28, 2011) -- A new finding shows how the million working units in the kidney regulate salt handling. This identifies a new possible therapeutic target for treating high blood pressure. ... > full story

'Nano-bricks' may help build better packaging to keep foods fresher longer (March 28, 2011) -- Scientists are reporting on a new material containing an ingredient used to make bricks that shows promise as a transparent coating for improving the strength and performance of plastic food packaging. Called "nano-bricks," the coating could help foods and beverages stay fresh and flavorful longer and may replace some foil packaging currently in use, they said. ... > full story

Eye movement differs in British and Chinese populations (March 28, 2011) -- Scientists have found that eye movement patterns of Chinese people, born and raised in China, are different to those of Caucasian people living in Britain. ... > full story

Structure of DNA repair complex reveals workings of powerful cell motor (March 28, 2011) -- Over the last years, researchers have steadily built a model of how a powerful DNA repair complex works. Now, a new discovery provides revolutionary insights into the way the molecular motor inside the complex functions -- findings they say may have implications for treatment of disorders ranging from cancer to cystic fibrosis. ... > full story

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