Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Science CiteTrack: Science News This Week

Expand Messages
  • SharifahNR
    Science/AAAS Webinar: Label and Label–free Technologies in Synergy: Creating a Powerful Approach to Drug Discovery – Wednesday, March 2, 2011, at 12 noon
    Message 1 of 10 , Feb 6, 2011
    • 0 Attachment
      Science/AAAS Webinar: Label and Label–free Technologies in Synergy:
      Creating a Powerful Approach to Drug Discovery – Wednesday, March 2, 2011,
      at 12 noon ET (9 a.m. PT, 5 p.m. GMT)


      Label–free technologies have now gained wide acceptance in both academic
      research settings and in drug discovery laboratories. The pairing of
      fast and accurate label–free technologies with traditional systems for
      labeled detection has made highly sensitive medium to high throughput
      cellular and biochemical assays in microplate format routinely possible.
      This advance offers scientists a fuller picture of their system under
      study and speeds the screening of compounds for drug discovery. This
      webinar will explore in depth the pros and cons of combining traditional
      label technologies with label-free assays, a so-called orthogonal approach.
      Ask your questions live during the event!
      Register TODAY: www.sciencemag.org/webinar
      Produced by the Science/AAAS Business Office and sponsored by PerkinElmer.
      Science/AAASScienceNOWScience 
JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience 
Multimedia CenterCollections
      >Science | >Science Signaling | >Science Translational Medicine | >Science Express | >Science Classic
      Human Genome Anniversary
      A special month-long series celebrating the 10th anniversary of the sequencing of the human genome explores the impacts of the genomics revolution on science and society.
      SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 331, Issue 6017
      dated February 4 2011, is now available at:
      http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol331/issue6017/news-summaries.dtl
      A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.

      SCIENCE News This Week
      February 4 2011, 331 (6017)

      NEWS OF THE WEEK


      This Week's Section

      Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.

      Around the World

      In science news around the world this week, Egypt's political upheavals are threatening its famed antiquities, Intel is investing $100 million in computing and communications research, DOE is requesting big increases in two signature energy-research initiatives, 6000 transgenic dengue-fighting mosquitoes were released in Malaysia, preventive treatment was shown to reduce severe malaria in children up to age 5, CERN will wait another year before it shuts down the Large Hadron Collider for repairs, and 3000-year-old artifacts that were destroyed in a World War II bombing raid have been pieced back together and went on display in Berlin.

      Random Sample

      "Bad Project," a lab-based parody of Lady Gaga's hit single "Bad Romance," has been viewed on YouTube more than 1.5 million times since it was posted on 20 January. Two hundred Cornell undergraduates swabbed their cheeks and submitted DNA samples to the Genographic Project, which tracks the history of human migration through DNA studies. And this week's numbers include funding to vaccinate children, carbon dioxide emissions, and university endowments.

      FINDINGS


      How Giants Conquered Earth

      Memory Booster

      An Army of Ant Genomes

      Hugs Follow a 3-Second Rule

      Kepler Packs in the Exoplanets

      The Write Stuff

      NEWS & ANALYSIS


      Can Obama Strike a Deal With House Republicans?

      Jeffrey Mervis
      Much has been made of the pending titanic battles between the White House and congressional Republicans over the fate of health care reform and how to stimulate the economy while rolling back spending. President Barack Obama made his position clear on both topics in his first State of the Union address to a divided Congress. Science talked with three Republican House members with seats on committees that oversee science about possible areas of agreement. Their answers, while reflecting their deeply conservative views, suggest there may be some room for compromise on how best to foster innovation.

      With Reforms Under Way, International Centers Ask: Where Is the Money?

      Dennis Normile
      Midway through a reform process intended to reinvigorate research efforts and boost financial support, scientists and administrators involved in the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research say the effort is bearing fruit. Its new central fund named an executive director last week: Jonathan Wadsworth of the U.K. Department for International Development. Leaders of the 15 centers say cooperation is growing, but they are also wondering what has happened to the promised money.

      USDA Decides Against New Regulation of GM Crops

      Erik Stokstad
      After nearly 4 years of a court-imposed ban, U.S. farmers will once again be able to plant genetically modified (GM) alfalfa. The high-stakes decision, announced last week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is notable because the department had considered establishing strict regulations that would have limited the planting of GM alfalfa near organic farms. Those restrictions would have set a precedent for the regulation of other GM crops. In opting against any restrictions, USDA is leaving it up to the farmers to figure out how organic and biotech agriculture can coexist, although the agency has pledged to help with research.

      Obama Shifts Focus From Emissions to 'Clean' Energy

      Eli Kintisch
      Letting market forces help the United States reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by choosing "cleaner" sources of electricity has been a popular notion among some Republicans, who oppose the Democratic alternative of putting a price on U.S. carbon emissions. Now the idea has a new advocate: President Barack Obama. Last week, Obama proposed a "Clean Energy Standard" that would require the country, by 2035, to obtain 80% of its electrical power from a list of sources that includes renewables, nuclear power, "efficient" natural gas, and coal with its CO2 emissions captured and sequestered.

      NIH Report Urges Greater Emphasis on Training for All Graduate Students

      Jeffrey Mervis
      It's a familiar complaint: Academic researchers intent on cranking out another paper and obtaining their next grant sometimes see their students as little more than another pair of hands rather than as scientists in training. Now comes a new report that attempts to redefine the goals of graduate and postdoctoral training and prods biomedical scientists to become better mentors. Similar exhortations have been made before, but the report comes from an organization with significant financial clout: the flagship training institute at the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

      NEWS FOCUS


      Waiting for the Revolution

      Eliot Marshall
      Medical schools and research centers are investing tens of millions of dollars each to join the genomic medicine bandwagon. Yet some say this is a huge leap into uncharted clinical territory. Most doctors have not embraced the genomic revolution, according to leaders of medical professional groups, because they have trouble seeing how it will benefit their patients. DNA testing is growing rapidly in oncology to guide the treatment of some cancers and in screening couples before conception and newborns to find dangerous mutations, and many labs are developing therapies to narrowly target tumor DNA. But aside from these situations, applications are scant; most public health reviews of DNA-based approaches have not found a health benefit. As doctors and scientists look back over the decade since the human genome was published, some are asking tough questions. Is the translation of DNA research into medical practice taking longer than expected? Has the genomic medicine revolution faltered?
      This News story and another on gene patents (p. 530) launch a series of features this month commemorating the 10th anniversary of Science's and Nature's publications of the human genome, which are gathered here.

      Human Genetics in the Clinic, One Click Away

      Eliot Marshall
      The number of genes identified as factors in human disease has exploded in the past decade, but the volume and the tentative nature of the information are a problem for medicine. Finding a way to give medical practitioners the right genetic information, but not too much, at the point of care is one of the biggest challenges in the field, second only to the main one: developing evidence that genomic medicine can make patients healthier (see main text). Computer technology may come to the rescue. At Intermountain Healthcare network in Salt Lake City, geneticists are using digital tools to slip up-to-date education into the daily run of medicine in ways that doctors may find helpful.
      This News story and the one it accompanies, plus another on gene patents (p. 530), launch a series of features this month commemorating the 10th anniversary of Science's and Nature's publications of the human genome, which are gathered here.

      The Human Genome (Patent) Project

      Sam Kean
      Scientists have come to realize that any one gene accounts for only a small risk for most diseases and that many "common" diseases like diabetes are the result of many distinct DNA variations. Many diagnostic companies have therefore shifted focus and offer so-called multiplex tests, which can scan dozens of genes and study the molecular products of each. Patents last up to 2 decades, however, so they cannot evolve as quickly as genetics has. In fact, one-fifth of human genes—especially potential moneymakers associated with diseases—are covered by patents, so a commercial outfit developing a diagnostic test faces quite a "patent thicket." But diagnostics is only the most obvious area in which critics say gene patents and gene science have become misaligned. Disputes over the proper way to patent genes—especially how many patents to grant and how broad to make them—have affected most areas of biotechnology.
      This News story and another on genomic medicine (p. 526) launch a series of features this month commemorating the 10th anniversary of Science's and Nature's publications of the human genome, which are gathered here.
      Full story at http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/331/6017/530?sa_campaign=Email/sntw/4-February-2011/10.1126/science.331.6017.530

      Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
      http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/alerts/main
      Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
      AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
      AAAS
      HighWire 
Press
         
      Science/AAAS Webinar: Label and Label–free Technologies in Synergy:
      Creating a Powerful Approach to Drug Discovery – Wednesday, March 2, 2011,
      at 12 noon ET (9 a.m. PT, 5 p.m. GMT)


      Label–free technologies have now gained wide acceptance in both academic
      research settings and in drug discovery laboratories. The pairing of
      fast and accurate label–free technologies with traditional systems for
      labeled detection has made highly sensitive medium to high throughput
      cellular and biochemical assays in microplate format routinely possible.
      This advance offers scientists a fuller picture of their system under
      study and speeds the screening of compounds for drug discovery. This
      webinar will explore in depth the pros and cons of combining traditional
      label technologies with label-free assays, a so-called orthogonal approach.
      Ask your questions live during the event!
      Register TODAY: www.sciencemag.org/webinar
      Produced by the Science/AAAS Business Office and sponsored by PerkinElmer.

    • SharifahNR
      - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Agilent Technologies - - - - - - - - ... Signaling | ... Translational Medicine | ... Special Issue: Dealing with Data Science and
      Message 2 of 10 , Feb 10, 2011
      • 0 Attachment

        - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Agilent Technologies - - - - - - - -


        Science/AAAS ScienceNOWScience
JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience
Multimedia CenterCollections
        >Science | >Science
        Signaling
        |
        >Science
        Translational Medicine |
        >Science Express | >Science Classic
        Special Issue: Dealing with Data
        Science and its sister publications explore the issues surrounding the growing influx of research data. Access to this special collection and related online discussion is FREE.
        SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 331, Issue 6018
        dated February 11 2011, is now available at:
        http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol331/issue6018/news-summaries.dtl
        A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.

        SCIENCE News This Week
        February 11 2011, 331 (6018)

        NEWS:


        Rescue of Old Data Offers Lesson for Particle Physicists

        Andrew Curry*
        Accustomed to working in large collaborations and moving swiftly on to bigger, better machines, particle physicists have no standard format for sharing or storing information after an experiment shuts down. Old data can end up scattered across the globe, stored haphazardly on old tapes, or lost entirely. This tendency has prompted some in the field to call for better care to be taken of data after an experiment has finished. For a very small fraction of the experiment's budget, they argue, data could be preserved in a form usable by later generations of physicists. To promote this strategy, researchers from a half-dozen major labs around the world, including CERN, formed a working group in 2009 called Data Preservation in High Energy Physics. One of the group's aims is to create the new post of "data archivist," someone within each experimental team who will ensure that information is properly managed.
        * Andrew Curry is a freelance writer based in Berlin.
        * Andrew Curry is a freelance writer based in Berlin.

        Is There an Astronomer in the House?

        Sarah Reed*
        An unusual collaboration at Harvard uses visualization software developed for use with medical scans such as MRIs to analyze astronomical data sets. It's not the only odd pairing of astronomers and biomedical researchers motivated by the need to deal with data. At the University of Cambridge, astronomers use sophisticated computer algorithms to analyze large batches of images, picking out faint, fuzzy objects. When they aren't looking for distant galaxies, nebulae, or star clusters, the astronomers lend their data-handling skills to the hunt for cancer. The key behind the project is the surprising similarity between images of tissue samples and the cosmos: Spotting a cancerous cell buried in normal tissue is like finding a single star in a crowded stellar field. Some scientists caution against using secondhand algorithms rather than ones customized for the project at hand, but those involved in these collaborations say they benefit from the opportunity to cross disciplines.
        * Sarah Reed is a freelance writer and former Science intern.
        * Sarah Reed is a freelance writer and former Science intern.

        May the Best Analyst Win

        Jennifer Carpenter
        A small Australian start-up company called Kaggle is exploiting the concept of "crowdsourcing" in a novel way. Kaggle's core idea is to facilitate the analysis of data by allowing outsiders to model it. To do that, the company organizes competitions in which anyone with a passion for data analysis can battle it out. The contests offered so far have ranged widely, from ranking international chess players to evaluating whether a person will respond to HIV treatments to forecasting if a researcher's grant application will be approved. Despite often modest prizes, the competitions have so far attracted more than 3000 statisticians, computer scientists, econometrists, mathematicians, and physicists from approximately 200 universities in 100 countries, Kaggle founder Anthony Goldbloom boasts. And the wisdom of the crowds can sometimes outsmart those offering up their data. In the HIV contest, entrants significantly improved on the efforts of the research team that posed the challenge. Citing this and other successes as examples, Goldbloom argues that Kaggle can help bring fresh ideas to data analysis.

        NEWS OF THE WEEK


        This Week's Section

        Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.

        Around the World

        In science news around the world this week, Pfizer is cutting its R&D spending, the U.S. Congress has sworn off earmarks, one of the Channel Islands has been named the world's first "dark sky island," a Japanese volcano is gathering steam, the Great Barrier Reef escaped being battered by the recent hurricane, drillers still have not reached subglacial Lake Vostok, and European research funding is being revamped.

        Random Sample

        A research expedition in New Zealand has once again caught sight of a lost natural wonder; U.K. archaeologists are protesting new restrictions on excavations; and a new survey tallies up the impact of an uncertain political environment on stem cell research. In this week's numbers: U.S. budget cuts, safeguarding specimens of threatened North American plant species, and a new science documentary film initiative.

        Newsmakers

        Newsmakers this week include Boston neurologist Seward Rutkove, who has scored $1 million for developing a new way to track the progression of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and German anesthesiologist Joachim Boldt, who may have as many as 90 of his papers retracted as a result of an ongoing investigation of his work.

        FINDINGS


        First Find From Undiagnosed Diseases Program

        Unpainting Presidential Portraits

        First Steps Toward Fighting Ebola in the Wild

        A Blood Test for Prion Disease

        Try This at Home

        NEWS & ANALYSIS


        Pfizer's Shakeup Means Less Money for Research

        Sam Kean
        The pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has announced it will lay off thousands of workers and cut its research and development budget by between $1.5 billion and $2 billion in 2012. That drastic decrease, industry observers say, reflects uncertainties facing many large drug companies about what role they should play—or even want to play—in basic drug research. Increasingly, they shop for the science they need, when they need it.

        From Nuclear Watchdog to the Maelstrom of Cairo

        Dan Charles*
        Mohamed ElBaradei, the former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, recently became a central figure in the antigovernment protests in Egypt and is on a steering committee of opposition leaders. The Muslim Brotherhood, considered the largest single opposition group and also part of the committee, has endorsed a leading role for him in potential talks with Egypt's rulers. Yet ElBaradei's future in the maelstrom of Egyptian politics is far from certain. Friends and former associates describe a personality that seems unsuited for politics: cerebral, reserved, principled, and uncharismatic.
        * Dan Charles is a writer based in Washington, D.C.
        * Dan Charles is a writer based in Washington, D.C.

        The Genome Project: What Will It Do as a Teenager?

        Jocelyn Kaiser
        The 10th anniversary of the completion of the draft human genome sequence has been a time for celebration—and also for sober stock-taking. Early successes in DNA research, some critics have said, led to hype about early payoffs for human health. But clinical applications have been slow to arrive. The need to pick up the pace of translating research into medicine informs the latest strategic plan from the U.S. National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), which published its 10-year map this week. Eric Green, who succeeded Francis Collins as NHGRI director, discussed the plan with Science in an interview.
        (Also see Science's monthlong series commemorating the 10th anniversary of the sequencing of the human genome.)

        Ending Earmarks Also Means the End Of Many Research Projects

        Jeffrey Mervis
        The last pillar supporting congressional earmarks crumbled last week, dooming the controversial practice for at least the next 2 years. Many scientists approve; they argue that earmarking reduces the amount of money available for peer-reviewed competitive research by forcing agencies to pay for things they did not request. But ending earmarks won't be painless; they pumped $2 billion into university facilities and research activities last year. Turning off the spigot will have a dramatic impact on the scientists who receive the money and perhaps also on the societal problems they are tackling.

        NEWS FOCUS


        What Would You Do?

        Jennifer Couzin-Frankel
        With genetic studies multiplying and sequencing costs plunging, more than a million people worldwide are, sometimes unknowingly, sharing their DNA with hundreds or even thousands of researchers. And it's slowly dawning on many scientists and ethicists that even if the DNA was offered to study diabetes or heart disease or some other specific condition, it may surrender many other secrets. Whether to divulge these results, and how, is arguably the most pressing issue in genetics today. The Ethical, Legal and Social Implications Research Program at the U.S. National Human Genome Research Institute is now accepting applications for more than $7.5 million in studies on how to share genetic results with research participants. In December, 28 researchers convened by the U.S. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute published a set of "ethical and practical" guidelines for returning such results. Hospitals struggling with the issue are running focus groups and mailing surveys to patients and families, querying them on what they might want to learn, however unexpected, about their or their child's DNA.
        This News Focus article and the one on the genomic data explosion are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.

        Will Computers Crash Genomics?

        Elizabeth Pennisi
        A single DNA sequencer can now generate in a day what it took 10 years to collect for the Human Genome Project. Computers are central to archiving and analyzing this information, but their processing power isn't increasing fast enough, and their costs are decreasing too slowly, to keep up with the deluge. Bioinformaticists are trying new approaches to handle the data onslaught. Some are heading for the clouds—cloud computing, that is, a pay-as-you-go service, accessible from one's own desktop, that provides rented time on a large cluster of machines that work together in parallel as fast as, or faster than, a single powerful computer. But other researchers warn that cloud computing is not the solution to every data problem.
        This News Focus article and the one on sharing genomic data with trial participants are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.

        Coming Soon to a Lab Near You: Drag-and-Drop Virtual Worlds

        Robert F. Service
        A group of researchers at Microsoft hopes to transform the way scientists study complex, ever-changing systems, such as the global carbon cycle and information processing inside cells. To do so, they're working to develop a suite of new software tools including novel programming languages that better represent biological systems and computer models that work across multiple scales, simulating carbon budgets at the levels of leaves, trees, and forests, for example. They're also striving to make those tools simple to use, thereby extending the types of studies that can be done by researchers who aren't full-time programmers. Prototype versions of several of these tools are now up and running and being put through their paces by researchers at Microsoft.
        Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
        Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
        AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
        AAAS
        HighWire
Press
           
        - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Agilent Technologies - - - - - - - -

        Assay automation made easy.

        Agilent's new BenchBot Robot accelerates the pace of your research no
        matter how your workflows evolve. Learn more about our special introductory
        offer and see the Benchbot Robot's flexibility and ease of use in action by
        visiting our website.
         




      • SharifahNR
        - - - - - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Agilent- - - - - - - - - - - - ... Signaling | ... Translational Medicine | ... Reader Poll: Data Use and Access We d like
        Message 3 of 10 , Feb 17, 2011
        • 0 Attachment

          - - - - - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Agilent - - - - - - - - - - - -


          Science/AAAS ScienceNOWScience
JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience
Multimedia CenterCollections
          >Science | >Science
          Signaling
          |
          >Science
          Translational Medicine |
          >Science Express | >Science Classic
          Reader Poll: Data Use and Access
          We'd like to know more about the issues and challenges researchers face with respect to the availability and use of data. Take our poll and see the related 11 February special issue on Dealing with Data.
          SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 331, Issue 6019
          dated February 18 2011, is now available at:
          http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol331/issue6019/news-summaries.dtl
          A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.

          SCIENCE News This Week
          February 18 2011, 331 (6019)

          NEWS OF THE WEEK


          This Week's Section

          Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.

          Around the World

          In science news around the world this week, the U.S. president and House of Representatives presented very different budget proposals, an Indian court ignored an appeal to release a physician-activist, seeds of more than 1500 types of Andean potato will be sent to the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, Nipah virus has struck again in Bangladesh, and Yale has agreed to return Machu Picchu artifacts to Peru.

          Newsmaker

          This week's Newsmaker is computer scientist Geoffrey Hinton of the University of Toronto, who has carried off Canada's most prestigious science prize—along with a $1 million grant to support his research over the next 5 years.

          Random Sample


          New Stem Cell Lab Designed to Inspire

          Figure
1

          CREDITS: © BRUCE DAMONTE/UCSF
          A stem cell research building opened 9 February at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), is generating oohs and ahhs from scientists and architecture buffs alike. The $123 million Ray and Dagmar Dolby Regeneration Medicine Building, which will headquarter the Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research, snakes along a 65° slope and features four split-level floors with terraced roofs planted with native grasses. Labs with open floor plans, interspersed with offices and lounge areas, are meant to foster interaction among its 300 researchers. It seems to be working, says the center's director, Arnold Kriegstein: "People are already congregating in the lunchrooms and in the hallways and striking up collaborations."

          Noted
          >>The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office
          of Research Integrity has produced an interactive online movie called The Lab. The choose-your-own-adventure-style film allows viewers to play as one of four characters, including an insecure postdoc and a promising young graduate student, to avert a case of scientific misconduct. http://scim.ag/labmovie

          Art From Produce
          Using the same MRI machines with which he conducts brain scans by day, Andrew Ellison, a technologist at Boston University School of Medicine, spends his evenings scanning fruit and vegetables. The resulting ethereal videos are produced as the scanner passes through the skin, pith, and flesh of everyday edibles.

          Figure
2

          MRI scans of peapods, a watermelon, black raspberries, and a persimmon (clockwise, from top left).
          CREDIT: ANDREW ELLISON/BUMC
          Ellison initially used an orange as a quality control. "A problem with the scanner would show itself with most fruits and veggies," he explains. But, fascinated by the orange's fleshy insides, Ellison began to scour the markets for other fruit and vegetables to scan. Encouraged by his colleagues' enthusiasm for his new art form, he started to post his videos to a blog (http://insideinsides.blogspot.com) that has received more than 500,000 hits since July 2010.
          Ellison has now racked up 36 different scans and is looking for more-exotic produce. "No one seems to be as amazed and moved by the artichoke as I am," he says, "but everyone has a favorite." (See also the Visualization section of this special issue on p. 848.)

          By the Numbers
          The budget for U.S. science got more complicated this week when President Barack Obama submitted his 2012 spending plan. Here are three starting points for the coming debate over how much the country should invest in non-defense research:
          $66.8 billion — The amount President Barack Obama has requested for 2012, a 6.5% increase over current spending levels.
          $62.7 billion — Current spending under a so-called continuing resolution for 2011 that expires on 4 March.
          $58.3 billion — The amount Republicans have budgeted in 2011 as part of a government-wide spending plan being debated this week by the House of Representatives.
          (SOURCE) AAAS R&D BUDGET AND POLICY PROGRAM

          FINDINGS


          Lymph Node Surgery Unnecessary for Early Breast Cancer

          Fetal Surgery Success

          Probing the Secrets of Prostate Tumors

          Outcast Planets Could Support Life

          NEWS & ANALYSIS


          Obama's 2012 Vision Clashes With House Cuts in 2011

          Jeffrey Mervis*
          It's a tale of two budgets, and the U.S. science community is applauding one while deploring the other. The twin story lines involve the president's vision for 2012 and a spending plan by House Republicans for the rest of this fiscal year. The latter is needed because Congress still hasn't finished work on the budget for the 2011 fiscal year that began last October. And while budgets are always political statements, this pair goes further by painting starkly contrasting visions of where the country should be headed—and the role of research in helping it to get there. All this is a recipe for confusion and uncertainty.
          * With reporting by the Science News staff.
          * With reporting by the Science News staff.

          High-Priced Recruiting of Talent Abroad Raises Hackles

          Hao Xin
          How much would it take to get you to relocate to China? Would 150 million yuan ($23 million) do the trick? If so, pack your bags—if you are a Nobel laureate, that is. Science has learned that the Chinese government will soon announce a new initiative to lure up to 10 winners of prestigious international science prizes to China each year by offering what may be the heftiest reward ever paid to individual researchers. Some prizewinners may be salivating, but at least one prominent Chinese-American scientist aware of the new program blasts it as a massive waste of resources.

          Science in Ivins Case Not Ironclad, NRC Says

          Yudhijit Bhattacharjee
          The scientific evidence behind the U.S. government's implication of U.S. Army researcher Bruce Ivins as the perpetrator of the 2001 anthrax letter attacks is not as strong as claimed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), according to a long-awaited review by the National Research Council released this week. Although the report agrees with the FBI on most of the conclusions drawn from the analysis of anthrax spores used in the mailings, it cautions that the science by itself does not definitively link the attack material to a flask under Ivins's control at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases, as the FBI asserted.

          A Quake May Have Hinted That It Was on the Way

          Richard A. Kerr
          Decades of monitoring have failed to turn up any warning sign of an imminent earthquake, and most seismologists have moved on to other problems. Now, however, a new analysis of decade-old, low-quality data from a large Turkish earthquake, reported on page 877 of this week's issue of Science, has revealed tantalizing signs of a quake precursor. The encouraging development comes from records of the magnitude-7.6 Izmit earthquake that struck just 100 kilometers from Istanbul in 1999.

          Growth Defect Blocks Cancer and Diabetes

          Mitch Leslie
          Life can be treacherous for Ecuadorians with Laron syndrome, a rare type of dwarfism. As children, they are vulnerable infectious diseases. As adults, they are prone to fatal accidents, such as falls on stairs that aren't sized for their short legs. But a new study shows that these people, who carry a genetic defect that prevents them from responding to growth hormone, are almost exempt from cancer and diabetes. The paper solidifies a link researchers have long suspected from animal studies and suggests that dialing down the growth-controlling molecular pathways might protect healthy adults from these diseases.

          NEWS FOCUS


          Can This DNA Sleuth Help Catch Criminals?

          Martin Enserink
          Forensic geneticist Manfred Kayser's group made headlines around the world last year with a paper showing how the DNA in a blood sample can give away someone's age—albeit with a margin of error of at least 9 years. His group has developed a DNA test to predict someone's eye color; work on hair color, skin color, and other traits is in progress. The genetic clues that Kayser and others are trying to glean from minuscule amounts of blood, semen, saliva, and hair are unlikely to be introduced as evidence in a courtroom. After all, when someone is suspected of a crime, or charged, a conventional DNA fingerprinting test can determine if his or her DNA matches traces found at the crime scene. Instead, forensic DNA phenotyping could be useful during an investigation, when predicting a criminal's looks can help the police focus their search. Forensic DNA phenotyping raises new ethical and legal issues, and the Netherlands has regulated the practice in a new law (see sidebar). But Kayser doesn't anticipate that the concerns will stop the field. This story and the one accompanying it are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which are gathered here.

          Emerging Forensics Field May Hit Legal, Ethical Obstacles

          Martin Enserink
          A year after a 16-year-old girl was brutally raped and murdered in the Netherlands in 1999, forensic geneticist Peter de Knijff set out to determine the geographic ancestry of the murderer from DNA in his semen. That was, he later admitted, "completely illegal" under Dutch law, which at the time allowed using DNA for traditional DNA identification but not for determining race, looks, or disease risk. De Knijff's dilemma could arise any day in many countries. In the wake of the murder—still unsolved today—the Dutch parliament adopted a law in 2003 regulating forensic DNA phenotyping, the use of DNA samples to predict a suspect's ancestry or physical characteristics (see main text). But the Netherlands is still the only country to have done so. This story and the one it accompanies are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which are gathered here.

          NASA Weighs Asteroids: Cheaper Than Moon, But Still Not Easy

          Richard A. Kerr
          Rather than first returning astronauts to the moon before heading off to Mars, NASA will be aiming for near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) as steppingstones in the human exploration of deep space. The new approach has disappointed lunar scientists, naturally enough, but planetary scientists who study the small bodies of the solar system are delighted. For them, the redirection promises a bonanza of new data that had seemed beyond their reach for decades to come. And astronomers looking for that next catastrophic impacter would get a boost just as their ongoing search gets a lot harder (see sidebar). But the same planetary scientists who would most benefit from an NEA-studded "flexible path" to Mars are warning that the new route looks bumpy. So far, no one knows of even one NEA that would clearly serve as a practical first target for astronauts. And no one knows what the first visitors will find at a tiny, nearly gravity-free body, except that it could be both bizarre and dangerous.

          A Windfall for Defenders of the Planet

          Richard A. Kerr
          If U.S. astronauts hopscotch from one near-Earth asteroid practicing for their trip to Mars (see main text), it will be a big help to astronomers campaigning to find and fend off the rare NEAs that threaten to collide with Earth. NASA-led astronomers have now found about 90% of the estimated 1000 NEAs a kilometer across and larger that could have been on a collision course with Earth. It turns out that none actually are, so the risk in this century of a civilization-ending impact is essentially gone. But that leaves the other part of the threat, the one from objects 140 meters in diameter and larger—so-called city killers. Only about 5% of them have been found under NASA's search program. And at current discovery rates, most of the city killers would remain undetected for many decades.

          Europe's Eager Reformer Takes on Framework Funding Goliath

          Gretchen Vogel
          For Irish teacher-turned-politician Máire Geogheghan-Quinn, landing one of Europe's top political jobs in charge of research has meant a steep learning curve. Having served her country in ministerial roles covering Gaelic culture, justice, and European affairs, she then spent 10 years overseeing European Union finances. But in her first year as E.U. commissioner for research, innovation, and science, she has had to come up with plans to reengineer the European Union's huge {euro}54 billion research-funding program, prepare for a battle over budgets, find extra funding for the troubled ITER fusion reactor project, and has managed to raise the profile of science policy at the European Union's highest levels. She spoke with Science last week in her Brussels office. Her remarks have been edited for clarity and brevity. (You can read more of this interview here.)
          Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
          Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
          AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
          AAAS
          HighWire
Press
             
          - - - - - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Agilent - - - - - - - - - - - -

          Assay automation made easy.

          Agilent's new BenchBot Robot accelerates the pace of your research
          no matter how your workflows evolve. Learn more about our special
          introductory offer and see the Benchbot Robot's flexibility and
          ease of use in action by visiting our website.
           




        • SharifahNR
          - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf Prize 2011 - - - - - - - - US$ 25,000 Prize for Neurobiology Now accepting entries for the US$ 25,000 Eppendorf &
          Message 4 of 10 , Feb 24, 2011
          • 0 Attachment
            - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf Prize 2011 - - - - - - - -

            US$ 25,000 Prize for Neurobiology
            Now accepting entries for the US$ 25,000
            Eppendorf & Science Prize for Neurobiology
            Deadline: June 15, 2011
            Visit www.eppendorf.com/prize
            Science/AAASScienceNOWScience 
JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience

Multimedia CenterCollections
            >Science | >Science Signaling | >Science Translational Medicine | >Science Express | >Science Classic
            Featured Video: Optogenetic Pacemaker
            Optical and genetic techniques have been combined to study development of the zebrafish cardiac pacemaker.
            SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 331, Issue 6020
            dated February 25 2011, is now available at:
            http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol331/issue6020/news-summaries.dtl
            A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.

            SCIENCE News This Week
            February 25 2011, 331 (6020)

            NEWS OF THE WEEK


            This Week's Section

            Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.

            Around the World

            In science news around the world this week, a student lab worker has become the first person in the United States to catch cowpox, India may join the U.S. MoonRise mission, Japan's whaling season was cut short, IBM's factoid-spewing supercomputer Watson is turning its talents to medicine, and the U.S. House of Representatives approved a budget that would trim roughly $5 billion from current federal spending on research.

            Random Sample

            A company has designed a supercompact fusion reactor. A retired schoolteacher is among the winners of the 2010 Wellcome Image Awards. An international group of mathematicians hopes create a "periodic table" for shapes. And this week's numbers quantify scientific literacy, global funding for research into neglected diseases, and lost-and-found species.

            AAAS Meeting

            At this year's AAAS annual meeting, it was reported that infants can distinguish between two languages they've never heard before just by looking at the face of a speaker, methane from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill may be migrating undigested, a seaweed could be used to fight malaria, and overfishing has drastically altered the balance of biomass in the world's oceans.

            FINDINGS


            Cancer Diagnosis: An App for That

            Rising Temperatures Bringing Bigger Floods

            Cheers! Ancient Britons Made Skull Cups

            Longer Genes, Longer Flight

            NEWS & ANALYSIS


            Post-Mubarak Era Seen as Opening for Science

            Andrew Lawler
            As the country's universities prepare to reopen on 26 February after a youth-powered revolution toppled the government, Egyptian and foreign researchers see an opportunity to elevate science, if decades of neglect and corruption can be overcome. Researchers predict that a revitalized Egypt will bolster its lagging R&D spending in order to solve the country's problems, from agriculture to urban unemployment. But a new government—which is unlikely to form before the fall—faces tremendous hurdles. It will inherit a university system that's woefully lacking in incentives; rooting out inefficiency and encouraging a research-savvy culture will be a challenge.

            House Cuts to DOE National Labs Would Also Hamstring Industry

            Adrian Cho
            A spending bill passed by the House of Representatives last week would bring the Department of Energy's (DOE's) entire science program to a screeching halt and wreak havoc on research funded by other agencies and by private industry (see p. 993). The so-called continuing resolution, which provides funding for the federal government for the rest of the 2011 fiscal year, would cut DOE's Office of Science by 18%. The $4.9 billion agency supports 10 national laboratories as well as research at hundreds of universities. Republican opposition to the Obama Administration's plans to beef up clean energy research may be the driving force behind the deep cuts, but if they are enacted—the bill now goes to the Senate, which takes issue with many provisions—the impact would extend far beyond research geared toward developing green energy technology.

            Researchers Use Weather Radar to Track Bat Movements

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            A new field of study called aeroecology looks at the interactions between flying animals and their airspace. Using weather radars, a bat ecologist has discovered that the weather strongly affects the behavior of at least one species. Brazilian free-tailed bats, common in the south-central United States and Mexico, emerge from their daytime slumber at different times of day depending on the temperature, she and her colleagues reported on 19 February at the AAAS annual meeting (see p. 995 and here for more meeting coverage).

            Schooling the Jeopardy! Champ: Far From Elementary

            Karen A. Frenkel*
            For 7 years, IBM researchers toiled to build a machine that could understand and answer spoken questions. In 2007, the company invited computer scientists from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) to two workshops at its research center in Yorktown Heights, New York. For CMU graduate student Nico Schlaefer, the workshops were a turning point. As an undergraduate at the University of Karlsruhe, Germany, and a visiting scholar at CMU in 2005, Schlaefer had built a question-answer system called Ephyra. Impressed, IBM offered Schlaefer a summer internship with the projectthe first of three he spent working on Watson. Last week, Schlaefer, now a Ph.D. candidate in computer science at CMU and an IBM Ph.D. Fellow, told Science about the algorithm he contributed to the now-world-famous computer.
            * Karen A. Frenkel is a science writer in New York City.
            * Karen A. Frenkel is a science writer in New York City.

            Activists Go on Warpath Against Transgenic Crops—and Scientists

            Richard Stone*
            Ever since the Chinese government awarded safety certificates in November 2009 to two genetically modified rice varieties and a variety of GM maize, researchers have come under increasing fire. The anti-GM backlash in China is driven in part by Greenpeace and scientists who are raising long-standing concerns about possible ecological and health effects of transgenic crops. Now, Wu You Zhi Xiang, a loose-knit group known in English as Utopia, is gathering signatures on an open letter denouncing GM crops. The letter alleges that China is being exploited by agribusinesses and calls for the revocation of the safety certificates for GM rice. Few observers expect Utopia's petition to sway the Chinese government, which has enshrined transgenic crop R&D as a top priority. But Utopia's actions may well slow commercialization of GM foods.
            * With reporting by Hao Xin and Li Jiao.
            * With reporting by Hao Xin and Li Jiao.

            NEWS FOCUS


            Second Thoughts About CT Imaging

            Lauren Schenkman
            David Brenner directs Columbia University's Center for Radiological Research, where he focuses on exactly how radiation damage leads to cancer. He's become one of the most insistent voices in an imbroglio that is roiling radiologists, medical physicists, and the general public over the rising and largely unregulated use of computed tomography (CT) scans, and whether the technology can, in some cases, cause more harm than good. The risks are surprisingly unclear, given how old and how commonly used the technology is. Brenner found that each CT scan gives a patient a very small chance of developing cancer, although many radiologists and medical physicists say that for a single CT scan, there's no hard evidence of any raised cancer risk. But even the skeptics favor managing potential CT risks, if for no other reason than to reassure patients. As the debate rages, the number of CT scans administered continues to soar and shows no sign of slowing down.

            Decision-Making

            Lauren Schenkman
            James Thrall, chief radiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston, has discovered in the past 6 years just how much doctors rely on computed tomography (CT) scans. In 2005, MGH created and implemented a program that scores the appropriateness of a CT scan every time a doctor orders one and compares its worth to that of other imaging techniques given the patient's symptoms. The software shares the score with doctors and offers them a chance to change their mind. As a result, the quarterly growth rate in MGH's use of CT scans has dropped from 3% to 0.25%.

            Beyond Human: New Faces, Fields Exploit Genomics

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            Fast new genomics technology is not just for human geneticists and biomedical researchers anymore.

            Tracing the Tree of Life

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            With the help of next-generation sequencing, a team of evolutionary biologists is shining a scientific spotlight on little-studied organisms called micrognathozoans. During a recent field trip to Greenland, they collected specimens of the tiny invertebrate and have stored them in a freezer. In a project that would have been unthinkably expensive for a single lab just a few years ago, they will now decipher much of the creature's genome and identify its genes. And that's just the beginning. The researchers and their colleagues have freezers full of other unusual organisms whose genomes they plan to sequence so that they can refine the much-debated animal tree of life. This story and the ones accompanying it are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.

            Using DNA to Reveal a Mosquito's History

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            In 2001, a pair of evolutionary geneticists made the mosquito Wyeomyia smithii a poster child for climate change when they demonstrated for the first time that an animal had evolved in response to global warming. Now the same researchers are applying next-generation DNA sequencing tools to probe further details of this species' evolutionary history—tools that have become so cheap and widely available that they can be applied to other poorly studied organisms as well. This story and the ones accompanying it are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.

            Tackling the Mystery of the Disappearing Frogs

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            The chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, has wiped out amphibians around the globe. New sequencing technologies that have made it affordable to directly decipher all the active genes of a species without doing the extensive, and expensive, presequencing legwork required in the past are now being used on wild populations of the mountain yellow-legged frog, comparing ones that persist despite exposure to the fungus to nonexposed ones that ultimately prove susceptible to it. Results so far suggest that in susceptible frogs, the immune system doesn't go on the defensive; the fungi somehow evades the body's defenses. This story and the ones accompanying it are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.

            Digging Deep Into the Microbiome

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            In the past decade, scientists have come to realize that animal intestines naturally harbor diverse microbial communities that help provide nutrients and sustain good health. A landmark 2005 study concluded that the bacterial communities in the human gut vary tremendously from one individual to the next. But that work looked at the guts of just three people, using traditional sequencing technology to probe for different variants of ribosomal RNA genes, each of which represented a different microbe. A new analysis of 146 people, made possible by the lower cost and higher efficiency of DNA sequencing, is now telling a much more detailed story, as well as providing researchers a new way to evaluate which genes are "must-haves" for the microbes. This story and the ones accompanying it are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.

            Probing Pronghorn Mating Preferences

            Elizabeth Pennisi
            Animal behaviorists have shown that if a female pronghorn picks the right male, her fawns will grow faster than normal and have a much better chance of surviving. They suspect that female pronghorns are actually choosing mates with the lowest burden of so-called deleterious mutations. They haven't had a good way to prove this theory, but thanks to the growing availability of next-generation DNA sequencing, they may finally have a chance. This story and the ones accompanying it are part of a collection this month reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the publication of the human genome, which is gathered here.
            Full story at http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/331/6020/1009?sa_campaign=Email/sntw/25-February-2011/10.1126/science.331.6020.1009

            Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
            http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/alerts/main
            Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
            AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
            AAAS
            HighWire 
Press
               
            - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf Prize 2011 - - - - - - - -

            US$ 25,000 Prize for Neurobiology
            Now accepting entries for the US$ 25,000
            Eppendorf & Science Prize for Neurobiology
            Deadline: June 15, 2011
            Visit www.eppendorf.com/prize

          • SharifahNR
            Science Online News Summaries Alert: 331 (6022) - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf Prize 2011 - - - - - - - - US$ 25,000 Prize for Neurobiology Now
            Message 5 of 10 , Mar 10, 2011
            • 0 Attachment


              Science Online News Summaries Alert: 331 (6022)
              - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf Prize 2011 - - - - - - - -

              US$ 25,000 Prize for Neurobiology
              Now accepting entries for the US$ 25,000
              Eppendorf & Science Prize for Neurobiology
              Deadline: June 15, 2011
              Visit www.eppendorf.com/prize

              Science/AAAS ScienceNOWScience
JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience
Multimedia CenterCollections
              >Science | >Science
              Signaling
              |
              >Science
              Translational Medicine |
              >Science Express | >Science Classic
              Civilian Casualties in Afghanistan
              SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 331, Issue 6022
              dated March 11 2011, is now available at:
              http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol331/issue6022/news-summaries.dtl
              A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.


              SCIENCE News This Week
              March 11 2011, 331 (6022)


              NEWS OF THE WEEK



              This Week's Section

              Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.


              Around the World

              In science news around the world this week, a new long-term study of a generation was announced in London, China is beefing up its space program, a rocket failure sent a NASA satellite plunging into the South Pacific, U.K. funding bodies decided the weight of research "impact," a Brazilian panel reassessed the country's R&D spending, a U.S. bioethics panel examined global clinical trials, and Costa Rica expanded a marine management area.

              Random Sample

              The computer language COBOL is the subject of an exhibition opening 17 March at the Smithsonian. Materials scientists in Japan say they can make the compound iron tellurium sulfide (FeTeS) conduct electricity without resistance if they first soak the stuff in booze. And this week's numbers quantify Jeopardy! scores, electric-car sales, and the cost of identifying Earth's estimated 5.4 million undiscovered animal species.

              Newsmakers

              This week's Newsmakers are Zahi Hawass, who announced last week that he intended to resign his post as minister of Egypt's antiquities in the wake of the country's revolution, and three Hungarian-born scientists who have been honored with a new {euro}1 million award from a Danish nonprofit organization for their contributions to European neuroscience.

              FINDINGS



              Elephants Can Lend a Helping Trunk


              Bad for the Bone


              Battle-Scarred Mars


              More Evidence That Chimps Die From AIDS


              Shedding Light on Anxiety


              NEWS & ANALYSIS



              China Bets Big on Small Grants, Large Facilities

              Richard Stone*
              Some nations talk about doubling the budgets of their basic research funding agencies. China's doing it. The National Natural Sciences Foundation of China, the country's main agency for funding competitive, peer-reviewed research grants, will get 12 billion yuan ($1.83 billion) in 2011—a 17% increase over 2010 and twice its budget just 2 years ago. Still, some science policy experts and researchers in China decry the lack of a coherent strategy behind the ramp-up of science spending. China's R&D programs, says one senior scientist who requested anonymity, are stacked "like a layer cake" with little holding them together.
              * With reporting by Hao Xin.
              * With reporting by Hao Xin.

              Ten Months After Deepwater Horizon, Picking Up the Remnants of Health Data

              Sara Reardon
              On 28 February, after 10 months of hearing anecdotal stories of flulike symptoms, rashes, heat stroke, and stress from cleanup workers in the Gulf of Mexico, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services launched the long-awaited Gulf Long-term Follow-up Study through the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. The largest, most comprehensive study of long-term health effects from an oil spill, it will attempt to collect health data on cleanup workers by contacting 100,000 of them directly and tracking 55,000 for at least 5 years, looking at long-term problems such as cancer, birth defects, and psychosocial issues. But at this juncture, experts worry that they won't know what to look for. Any short-term physiological effects such as elevated levels of biomarkers or telltale rashes that could be definitively linked to the spill are long gone, as are toxicants in workers' blood that could have provided information on exposure levels. What remains is an economically depressed community in which many suffer from stress-related illnesses that will be difficult to pin on any particular cause.

              More Negative Data for Link Between Mouse Virus and Human Disease

              Jon Cohen
              A new finding presented at a conference last week throws cold water on the impassioned debate about the link between a novel mouse retrovirus and prostate cancer and chronic fatigue syndrome in humans. Yet few believe it will end the controversy, which began in 2006. In an extensive sleuthing expedition that looked back nearly 20 years, two collaborating research teams contend that they have evidence that xenotropic murine leukemia virus–related virus (XMRV) resulted from the chance recombination of pieces of two mouse viruses in lab experiments and that the connections to human disease are spurious. But even if XMRV is not a threat to human health, the fact that a retrovirus that can readily infect human cells was apparently generated by chance in the lab raises some interesting and potentially troubling issues.

              Price Tags for Planet Missions Force NASA to Lower Its Sights

              Richard A. Kerr
              Scientists choosing the missions they want to send across the solar system in the next decade knew their recommended program wouldn't come cheap. But for the first time in a planetary science decadal survey, outside consultants estimated mission costs, and the process has produced huge numbers for the largest proposed missions. Those numbers have forced some painful and unprecedented recommendations in the committee's report, which was released Monday evening at the annual Lunar and Planetary Science Conference.

              NEWS FOCUS



              Counting the Dead in Afghanistan

              John Bohannon
              In January, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) provided Science with the military's internal record of the death and injury of Afghan civilians, broken down by month, region, weaponry, and perpetrator. By its reckoning, 2537 civilians were killed and 5594 were wounded over the past 2 years, with 12% of those casualties attributed to ISAF forces and the rest to insurgents. In February, after learning that the military was releasing these data, both the United Nations and an Afghan human rights organization agreed to release versions of their own civilian casualty data to Science. Science assembled a team of experts to analyze the released data sets. They conclude that while the war has grown deadlier for Afghan civilians over the past 2 years, ISAF has become a safer fighting force. The majority of deaths, and nearly all of the recent increase, are attributed to indiscriminate attacks by insurgents rather than ISAF soldiers. All of these data, as well as other information never before released, are now freely available online. Taken together, they provide the clearest picture yet of the human cost of the war.

              War as a Laboratory For Trauma Research

              John Bohannon
              In many ways, war is the perfect laboratory for trauma medicine research. On any given day, dozens or even hundreds of casualties arrive by helicopter to military hospitals across Iraq and Afghanistan. IEDs are the number one risk, often combining burns, deep lacerations from shrapnel, and brain trauma from blast waves. Injuries like these are too rare to study in peacetime. And because all the patients are military personnel, they come with exhaustive data relating to preinjury health and postinjury outcome. Many of the insights gained from battlefield studies have found their way into civilian emergency medicine. But war is also the most chaotic and stressful environment imaginable for doing science. Adding to the difficulty, controversy has dogged medical research conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan, including charges by journalists that researchers rushed experimental treatments onto the battlefield without proper ethical review or sufficient safety testing, needlessly risking the lives of soldiers. Science investigated these issues with the help of two bioethicists and several sources from both civilian and military trauma medicine.
              Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
              Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
              AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
              AAAS
              HighWire
Press
                 

              - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf Prize 2011 - - - - - - - -

              US$ 25,000 Prize for Neurobiology
              Now accepting entries for the US$ 25,000
              Eppendorf & Science Prize for Neurobiology
              Deadline: June 15, 2011
              Visit www.eppendorf.com/prize
               





            • SharifahNR
              Science Online News Summaries Alert: 332 (6027) Science/AAAS Webinar: Probing Cancer Pathways: How Chemical Biology Can Inform Oncology Research &n-dash;
              Message 6 of 10 , Apr 14 7:39 PM
              • 0 Attachment


                Science Online News Summaries Alert: 332 (6027)
                Science/AAAS Webinar: Probing Cancer Pathways: How Chemical Biology
                Can Inform Oncology Research &n-dash; Wednesday, May 3, 2011, at 12 noon
                Eastern Time (9 a.m. PT, 4 p.m. GMT)

                During normal growth and differentiation, maintaining the appropriate
                homeostatic balance in a cell is achieved through the interaction of
                small molecule chemical modulators with proteins involved in cellular
                signaling. Researchers take advantage of these regulatory interactions
                to study signaling pathways, using small molecules both as tools to
                interrogate a pathway and as precursors for drug development. This
                webinar provides an overview of how chemical biology can be used in
                various model systems to advance our understanding of basic cell
                signaling mechanisms and aid in the discovery of novel small molecule
                therapeutics for cancer.
                Ask your questions live during the event!
                Register TODAY: www.sciencemag.org/webinar
                Produced by the Science/AAAS Business Office and sponsored by Promega.

                Science/AAAS ScienceNOWScience
JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience
Multimedia CenterCollections
                >Science | >Science
                Signaling
                |
                >Science
                Translational Medicine |
                >Science Express | >Science Classic
                Science Video Portal
                The VideoLab, part of Science's Video Portal, features video contributions from our authors.
                SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 332, Issue 6027
                dated April 15 2011, is now available at:
                http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol332/issue6027/news-summaries.dtl
                A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.


                SCIENCE News This Week
                April 15 2011, 332 (6027)


                NEWS OF THE WEEK



                This Week's Section

                Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.


                Around the World

                In science news around the world this week, a gene that causes bacteria to become resistant to antibiotics has been found in drinking water in New Delhi, Japan is expanding the evacuation zone around the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors, U.S. officials have reached an agreement on spending, funding for public agricultural research in sub-Saharan Africa is increasing, and scientists now have two x-ray lasers—almost.

                Newsmakers

                This week's Newsmakers are classical archaeologist Friederike Fless, who last month became the first woman to head the German Archaeological Institute, and Baruch Blumberg, winner of the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine in 1976 for discovering the hepatitis B virus and inventing a vaccine against it, who died on 5 April at age 85.

                Random Sample

                In a monthlong exhibition beginning 3 May at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London called "Beyond Entropy," eight interdisciplinary groups explore the second law of thermodynamics in the context of sound, electricity, heat, and gravitational potential energy. And this week's numbers quantify the height of Japan's 11 March tsunami and the percentage of U.S. universities where the average faculty salary decreased in 2010–2011.

                FINDINGS



                Cosmic Feast May Be Producing Universe's Biggest Blast


                Caffeine Fiend? Could Be A Gene Thing


                Sex After a Field Trip Yields Scientific First


                NEWS & ANALYSIS



                Research Holds Up Well In Final 2011 Agreement

                Jeffrey Mervis
                When the dust settles on the spending bill—negotiated just an hour before the federal government would have shut down last week—scientists can breathe more easily. U.S. research agencies were largely spared from deep cuts in current spending. The legislation, up for a vote as Science went to press, would trim $38.5 billion from 2010 budget levels. But it marks a major retreat from the $61 billion cut approved in February by the Republican-led House of Representatives that would have hobbled basic research across the federal government and ravaged energy and climate programs.

                Fukushima Radiation Creates Unique Test of Marine Life's Hardiness

                Sara Reardon
                When radiation readings from water monitors around the leaking Fukushima Daiichi plant began rising this month, spiking at 7.5 million times Japan's legal limit for radioisotopes in public water, government agencies reacted sharply. For the first time in history, the Japanese government set a limit on radiation in seafood and began screening fish. India and China recently banned imports of food products from certain areas of Japan, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration began conducting its own radiation screens on seafood imports. Monitoring food makes sense, according to radiation geochemists, but they warn against overreacting to the perceived risk of ocean contamination.

                Outlook Brightens for Plastic Solar Cells

                Robert F. Service
                For years the efficiency of polymer-based solar cells scraped along at a feeble 3% to 5%. But things have improved markedly over the past 2 years. In early April, Mitsubishi Chemical reportedly set a new efficiency record, producing organic solar cells with a 9.2% conversion efficiency. Meanwhile, three other companies—Konarka Technologies, Solarmer Energy Inc., and Heliatek—are now reporting cells with efficiencies greater than 8%. Many researchers in the field are confident that the figure could soon top 10% and possibly reach 15%.

                Chinese Neurosurgeons Quietly Push for Easing of Brain Operation Ban

                Wang Xiao*
                Concerned about reports that many psychiatric patients were not benefiting from psychosurgery, or were even suffering irreparable harm, China's health ministry issued a regulation in 2008 that limits brain surgery to a few conditions for which it is recognized as a last resort. Experimental applications, such as stereotactic ablation for schizophrenia, are forbidden. The problem, scientists say, is the absence of international guidelines. At a World Society for Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery meeting last month, researchers and neurosurgeons sought to clarify which brain operations for psychiatric conditions should be allowed and which should be experimental or off-limits. The consensus forged at the meeting—the first such forum since the 1970s—may encourage the health ministry to revise its psychosurgery guidelines. But unscrupulous clinics are casting a shadow on the practice in China.
                * Wang Xiao is a writer in Shanghai.
                * Wang Xiao is a writer in Shanghai.

                Tennessee House Bill Opens Door to Challenges to Evolution, Climate Change

                Jeffrey Mervis
                Last week, the Tennessee House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved an innocuous-sounding measure allowing science teachers in the state to help their students "develop critical thinking skills." The legislation, which specifically mentions the teaching of "biological evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning," is expected to become law next month after the state Senate embraces an identical version and the governor signs it. Scientists say HB 368, and the corresponding Senate bill, SB 893, would actually have the opposite effect on critical thinking by introducing nonscientific beliefs into science classes and by undermining the principles of scientific inquiry.

                A Sign of New Particles or General Restlessness?

                Adrian Cho
                Last week, news spread that scientists in the United States may have spotted a bit of matter unlike any seen before. But even as they contemplate the implications, physicists are taking the result with a grain of salt. The supposed signal could be an experimental artifact, caution the researchers who found it. And if a new particle is there, physicists may have to perform theoretical contortions to explain why they didn't spot it before.

                Frightening Risk of Marfan Syndrome, and Potential Treatment, Elucidated

                Jennifer Couzin-Frankel
                The biggest risk for patients with Marfan syndrome, a genetic condition that weakens connective tissue throughout the body, including in the lungs, the skeleton, and the cardiovascular system, is a ruptured aorta, which can kill them. Five years ago, a blood pressure drug called losartan was found to virtually erase the risk of aneurysms. In this week's issue of Science, on pages 358 and 361, researchers parse the molecular cascades that lead to aneurysms in Marfan syndrome, shedding light on why losartan looks so promising and potential avenues for the development of new treatments.

                NEWS FOCUS



                Uncertain Future for Tropical Ecology

                Craig Simons*
                Paraecologists—locals trained to do the nuts and bolts of ecology research—are an example of excellent science on a shoestring. By hiring and training locally, scientists can boost productivity and cut costs, all while supporting conservation. Over the past 2 decades, paraecologists have discovered thousands of species and churned out hundreds of peer-reviewed articles. Although most paraecologists start with little science knowledge, some have gone on to earn advanced degrees and take key positions in national forest management and conservation. But paraecologists may be a vanishing breed; money woes are threatening the concept of local, long-term hiring for field research.
                * Craig Simons is a writer in Beijing.
                * Craig Simons is a writer in Beijing.

                Do Jumping Genes Spawn Diversity?

                Gretchen Vogel
                In theory, the behavior of inbred mice reared and housed under seemingly identical conditions should be as similar as their perfectly matched genes. But, to the frustration of researchers, the rodents don't act like exact copies of each other. Of the possible explanations for such differences, researchers have found evidence for a particularly unexpected one: jumping genes in the brain. Formally known as transposable elements, they are small bits of genetic material that can move around the genome. They have generally been seen as troublemakers; when they jump, they can land in places that cause mutations or otherwise skew the expression of important genes. But some researchers argue that such changes might have a positive side, helping to generate diversity in brain cells. Such diversity might be important in brain development, they think, providing the raw material for building a flexible organ able to react to new environments and situations. And because a transposable element creates a slightly different genome each time it moves, it could explain why genetically "identical" mice aren't identical after all. It's far from a proven idea, but it has started to gain attention among geneticists who study jumping genes.

                Asteroid Model Shows Early Life Suffered a Billion-Year Battering

                Life was hard on early Earth, but geologists and planetary scientists at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference reported evidence of even more biotic stress several billion years ago: a prolonged pummeling by huge asteroids that would have dwarfed the one that killed off the dinosaurs. The known impact beds suggest that there was a large impact every 40 million years on average in the Archean eon—the time from 3.8 billion years ago to 2.5 billion years ago—not every 500 million years, as has lately been the case.

                Prime Science Achieved at Asteroid

                A crippled Hayabusa spacecraft barely made it back to Earth last June, and it returned only a wisp of a sample from Itokawa, the asteroid it visited in 2005. But at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, Japanese researchers announced that the little spacecraft that could has scored a solid scientific success. Detailed analyses of the sample—the first ever returned from an asteroid—have confirmed the oft-contentious claim that the most common type of meteorite falls to Earth from a class of asteroids long cloaked by a mysterious discoloration.

                Snapshots From the Meeting

                Richard A. Kerr
                Snapshots from the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference include briny flows and new crater-forming meteorite hits on Mars.

                A Badly Battered Vesta Awaits Dawn's Arrival

                Richard A. Kerr
                Planetary scientists are waiting eagerly for July, when the Dawn spacecraft is due to arrive at asteroid Vesta. The asteroid belt's second-most-massive body has had quite a complicated life. It melted early on to form an iron core and rocky mantle and crust, spewed volcanic outpourings, and then suffered a massive impact. Now, a group of impact modelers argued at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference that the object that crashed into Vesta and reshaped its geology was eight times as massive as previously thought.
                Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
                Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
                AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
                AAAS
                HighWire
Press
                   

                Science/AAAS Webinar: Probing Cancer Pathways: How Chemical Biology
                Can Inform Oncology Research &n-dash; Wednesday, May 3, 2011, at 12 noon
                Eastern Time (9 a.m. PT, 4 p.m. GMT)

                During normal growth and differentiation, maintaining the appropriate
                homeostatic balance in a cell is achieved through the interaction of
                small molecule chemical modulators with proteins involved in cellular
                signaling. Researchers take advantage of these regulatory interactions
                to study signaling pathways, using small molecules both as tools to
                interrogate a pathway and as precursors for drug development. This
                webinar provides an overview of how chemical biology can be used in
                various model systems to advance our understanding of basic cell
                signaling mechanisms and aid in the discovery of novel small molecule
                therapeutics for cancer.
                Ask your questions live during the event!
                Register TODAY: www.sciencemag.org/webinar
                Produced by the Science/AAAS Business Office and sponsored by Promega.
                 




              • SharifahNR
                - - - - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf - - - - - - - - - - - Go for unaffected assay results with Eppendorf Tubes and Plates Plates and tubes for storing
                Message 7 of 10 , Jun 9, 2011
                • 0 Attachment


                  - - - - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf - - - - - - - - - - -

                  Go for unaffected assay results with Eppendorf Tubes and Plates

                  Plates and tubes for storing and processing samples should be selected
                  carefully as they can influence the quality and reproducibility of your
                  entire workflow. Eppendorf Tubes®, Deepwell Plates and Microplates are
                  produced without additives that have been shown to influence bioassay results.
                  No slip agents, no plasticizers or biocides are used at any time of the
                  manufacturing process. Made from highest quality virgin raw materials,
                  Eppendorf Tubes and Plates offer proven mechanical stability, batch tested
                  purity standards and excellent automation compatibility that make them your
                  perfect partner for demanding research.

                  View references and order your free sample
                  www.eppendorf.com/consumables

                  Science/AAAS ScienceNOWScience JournalsScienceCareers.orgBlogsScience Multimedia CenterCollections
                  >
                  Science |
                  >
                  Science Signaling |
                  >
                  Science Translational Medicine |
                  >
                  Science Express |
                  >
                  Science Classic
                  SCIENCE News Summaries, Volume 332, Issue 6035
                  dated June 10 2011, is now available at:
                  http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol332/issue6035/news-summaries.dtl
                  A copy of the "SCIENCE News This Week" section has been appended below.


                  SCIENCE News This Week
                  June 10 2011, 332 (6035)


                  NEWS OF THE WEEK



                  This Week's Section

                  Follow the links below for a roundup of the week's top stories in science, or download a PDF of the entire section.


                  Around the World

                  In science news around the world this week, Brazil's environment agency approved construction of an immense hydroelectric station in the Amazon rainforest, a spending bill passed by the House of Representatives would drastically downsize science and technology programs at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the World Health Organization has concluded that cell phones may be carcinogenic, and a new report warns that international funding needed to maintain progress in fighting HIV/AIDS has been declining.

                  Random Sample

                  National Academies reports can now be downloaded free of charge. Researchers have attempted to mate a pair of rare corpse flowers. And this week's numbers quantify Arctic lands that will be unreachable by 2050 and points devoted to a math problem later found to be unsolvable.

                  Newsmakers

                  This week's Newsmakers are Rosalyn Yalow, winner of the 1977 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for developing a radioimmunoassay for measuring minute quantities of hormones in blood with radioactive tracers, who died on 30 May at the age of 89; and the winners of the 2011 Gruber Cosmology Prize and the Shaw Prizes, which highlight achievements in astrophysics, immunology, and geometry.

                  FINDINGS



                  New Superbug Found in Cows and People


                  Antiatoms, Ready for Work


                  NEWS & ANALYSIS



                  Scientists Rush to Study Genome of Lethal E. coli

                  Kai Kupferschmidt*
                  As Science went to press, scientists have not been able to find the source of the deadliest outbreak of enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) bacteria on record. Yet they are getting to know the pathogen causing it in unprecedented detail, aided by an armada of scientists around the world who are analyzing available genomic data on the fly and, via tweets, wikis, and blogs, disseminating results online.
                  * Kai Kupferschmidt is a writer in Berlin.

                  Computer Scientist Goes on Offensive to Defend Climate Scientists

                  Eli Kintisch
                  To climate scientists like Pennsylvania State University's Michael Mann, who has come under relentless attacks from climate change skeptics, John Mashey is "one of the good guys." The 65-year-old Mashey, who amassed a small fortune designing computer systems for the likes of Bell Labs and Silicon Graphics, is spending his retirement years compiling voluminous critiques of what he calls the "real conspiracy" to produce "climate antiscience." He is trying to turn the tables, using tactics some of Mann's opponents may find uncomfortably familiar.

                  Mice Prompt Look at Cholesterol's Role in Female Fertility

                  Jennifer Couzin-Frankel
                  It's easy to forget that cholesterol isn't simply a villain. The white, waxy substance is famously intertwined with heart disease, but cholesterol lives all over the body, building cell membranes and hormones. A small group of researchers is now wondering whether cholesterol also helps maintain fertility—and whether cholesterol abnormalities impair a woman's ability to get and stay pregnant. There's even speculation that a cholesterol-lowering drug, which is no longer on the market, could treat a subset of women who are battling infertility.

                  Stigma of HIV Imperils Hard-Won Strides in Saving Lives

                  Jane Qiu*
                  Encouraged by last month's news that AIDS mortality has plummeted in China, authorities here are embarking on a new 5-year plan for tackling the epidemic that includes ambitious targets for case detection and access to treatment. But further gains are jeopardized, critics warn, by rampant discrimination against HIV-infected individuals and the entrenched stigma of homosexuality in China.
                  * Jane Qiu is a writer in Beijing.

                  Planetary Two-Step Reshaped Solar System, Saved Earth?

                  Richard A. Kerr
                  Planetary scientists ponder a lot of questions about origins. Why didn't Mars grow as large as Earth and Venus? Where did the asteroid belt come from? What are Jupiter and Saturn doing so far from the sun? For that matter, why didn't Jupiter just drive Earth into the sun the way most Jupiter-like exoplanets have driven their rocky, Earth-sized neighbors into their stars? A new study that models the earliest solar system's gravitational fandango has an answer for each of those questions, and more. In the model, the solar system's fate is changed forever when Saturn snags the inrushing Jupiter and together they back off before driving the still-growing Earth into oblivion.

                  NEWS FOCUS



                  A Bengali Recipe for Disaster

                  Richard Stone
                  The Great Assam Earthquake of 1897 stands as a stark warning to cities on the floodplains of South Asia, including Bangladesh's densely populated capital, Dhaka. Perched on thick, alluvial sediments 200 kilometers south of the epicenter, Dhaka was badly damaged in 1897. The ground under much of the city liquefied, destabilizing foundations. Thanks to the earthquake's gradual buildup, most people in Dhaka managed to escape before buildings disintegrated, but the city may not be so lucky next time. Scientists are finding that both its social features and its geology, including a hidden fault that seismologists believe is gathering stress beneath the sediments, could make the area more vulnerable than appreciated. Few structures in this city of 13 million are built to resist shaking. Shoddy construction is prevalent across Bangladesh and many other developing nations in seismic danger zones.

                  Enceladus Now Looks Wet, So It May Be ALIVE!

                  Richard A. Kerr
                  Liquid water—and the life it may permit—has been the goal of planetary exploration for decades, with not much of the sloshy stuff to show for the effort. Jupiter's moon Europa has a global ocean, but unfortunately, it's out of reach beneath many kilometers of ice. So the sight in 2005 of ice and water vapor jetting hundreds of kilometers above Saturn's icy little moon Enceladus, like Yellowstone geysers gone ballistic, warmed the hearts of astrobiologists everywhere. But as terrestrial geologists soon pointed out, water plumes needn't mean liquid water. Enceladus might be frozen solid and still be spouting water ice and vapor. With new observations, the "Enceladus: Oasis or Iceball?" debate is now coming down on the side of a wet interior for the moon—and a chance for life.

                  South African Cave Slowly Shares Secrets of Human Culture

                  Michael Balter
                  At Sibudu Cave in South Africa lies a record of prehistoric human occupation that extends back at least 77,000 years and probably much longer. These multilayered, humanmade sediments are crammed with thousands of artifacts left behind by Homo sapiens during our species' formative years, culturally speaking. There are sophisticated stone tools, skillfully made bone implements, deep hearths, and the charred bones of large and small mammals; there are swatches of bedding made of sedges and grass, chunks of red ochre, and sparkling ornamental beads made from the shells of sea snails. This site has become a powerful tool for testing hypotheses about the cognitive prowess of early modern humans. The excavations have pushed back the first signposts for complex cognition, producing evidence for the earliest known bows and arrows as well as the precocious use of snares and traps to catch small animals, both of which require the ability to plan ahead.
                  Unsubscribe or edit your subscriptions for this service at:
                  Written requests to unsubscribe may be sent to:
                  AAAS / Science, 1200 New York Avenue NW, Washington DC 20005, U.S.A.
                  AAAS
                  HighWire
Press
                     

                  - - - - - - - - - - - Sponsored by Eppendorf - - - - - - - - - - -

                  Go for unaffected assay results with Eppendorf Tubes and Plates

                  Plates and tubes for storing and processing samples should be selected
                  carefully as they can influence the quality and reproducibility of your
                  entire workflow. Eppendorf Tubes®, Deepwell Plates and Microplates are
                  produced without additives that have been shown to influence bioassay results.
                  No slip agents, no plasticizers or biocides are used at any time of the
                  manufacturing process. Made from highest quality virgin raw materials,
                  Eppendorf Tubes and Plates offer proven mechanical stability, batch tested
                  purity standards and excellent automation compatibility that make them your
                  perfect partner for demanding research.

                  View references and order your free sample
                  www.eppendorf.com/consumables


                  Manage Your E-mail Subscription Preferences
                  Need help? Contact memuser@....
                  This email was sent to: SHANOR24@... 
                  AAAS / Science   |  1200 New York Avenue NW  |  Washington, DC 20005  |  U.S.A. 
                  +1 202-326-6417  |  memuser@...   |  Privacy Policy


                Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.