Biological Pest Control Harms Natives
An insect imported to control exotic weeds now poses a threat to native plants.
Louda, S.M. 1997. Ecological effects of a host range expansion by a weevil imported for the biological control of weeds. Annual meeting of the Ecological Society of America. Albuquerque, N.M.
McEvoy, P.B. 1996. Host specificity and biological control. BioScience 46(June):401.
Mlot, C. 1997. Cassava pest biologically suppressed. Science News 152(July 26):56.
U.S. Congress Office of Technological Assessment. 1993. Harmful non-indigenous species in the United States. OTA-F-565. Washington, D.C.: United States Government Printing Office. The report can also be obtained at http://www.wws.princeton.edu/~ota/.
Top Othello player loses to computer
The computer program Logistello defeated world champion Takeshi Murakami, winning six out of six games.
Details of the Logistello-Murakami match are available at http://www.neci.nj.nec.com/homepages/mic/event.html.
Levy, D. 1983. Computer Gamesmanship. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Peterson, I. 1997. Silicon champions of the game. Science News 152(Aug. 2):76.
A guide to the game of Othello, including information on playing Othello online, is available at http://www.armory.com/~iioa/othguide/faq/index.html.
United neighbors take a bite out of crime
Violent crime rates drop in neighborhoods in which residents trust one another and show a willingness to act for the common good.
Sampson, R.J., S.W. Raudenbush, and F. Earls. 1997. Neighborhoods and violent crime: A multilevel study of collective efficacy. Science 277(Aug. 15):918.
Eruption on Montserrat gaining strength
Volcanic explosions rocked the tiny island of Montserrat for 5 days in early August.
Information and official updates are available at the Montserrat Volcano Observatory's website: http://www.geo.mtu.edu/volcanoes/west.indies/soufriere/govt/
Nuclear buildup may explain brain diseases
The abnormal accumulation of mutant proteins inside a cell's nucleus may underlie the neurodegeration seen in Huntington's disease and several similar illnesses.
Bates, G.P., et al. 1997. Formation of neuronal intranuclear inclusions underlies the neurological dysfunction in mice transgenic for the HD mutation. Cell 90(Aug. 8).
Pittman, R.N., et al. 1997. Intranuclear inclusions of expanded polyglutamine protein in spinocerebellar ataxia type 3. Neuron 19 (August).
Scherzinger, E., et al. 1997. Huntingtin-encoded polyglutamine expansions form amyloid-like protein aggregates in vitro and in vivo. Cell 90(Aug. 8).
Travis, J. 1996. Huntington's disease strikes mice. Science News 150(Nov. 30):348.
______. 1995. When CAG spells trouble. Science News 147(June 10):360.
High vacuum produces ultrapure crystals
An improved vacuum system leads to gallium arsenide crystals of record purity.
Umansky, V., R. de-Picciotto, and M. Heiblum. 1997. Extremely high-mobility two dimensional electron gas: Evaluation of scattering mechanisms. Applied Physics Letters 71(Aug. 4):683.
Ice crystals promote molecular eruption
Conversion of an unusual form of frozen water into its more familiar crystalline counterpart creates pathways that release trapped gas molecules.
Smith R.S. . . . B.D. Kay. 1997. The molecular volcano: Abrupt CCI[sub 4] desorption driven by the crystallization of amorphous solid water. Physical Review Letters 79(Aug. 4):909.
Mutated gene can delay onset of AIDS
An altered gene may delay AIDS onset in some HIV-positive individuals.
Rollins, B.J. 1997. Chemokines. Blood 90(Aug. 1):909.
Smith, M.W., et al. 1997. Contrasting genetic influence of CCR2 and CCR5 variants on HIV-1 infection and disease progression. Science 277(Aug. 15):959.
Liu, R., et al. 1996. Homozygous defect in HIV-1 coreceptor accounts for resistance of some multiply-exposed individuals to HIV-1 infection. Cell 86(Aug. 9):367.
Sternberg, S. 1996. AIDS optimism high despite therapy cost. Science News 150(July 13):21.
Travis, J. 1996. Mutant gene explains some HIV resistance. Science News 150(Aug. 17):103.
______. 1996. AIDS update 1996. Science News 149(March 23):184.
AstronomyModeling the moon's origin
New computer simulations are beginning to pin down the details of the moon's origin in a violent collision between Earth and a planet-sized body 4.5 billion years ago.
Cameron, A.G.W. 1997. The origin of the moon and the single impact hypothesis V1. Icarus 126(March):126.
Canup, R.M., et al. 1997. N-body simulations of lunar accretion in an impact-generated disk. Annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society's Division for Planetary Sciences. Cambridge, Mass.
Earth, water, and comets
Measurements of the deuterium-hydrogen ratio in Comet Hale-Bopp suggest that comets could not have been the main source of water for Earth's oceans.
Meier, R., et al. 1997. Deuterium in comet C/1995 01 (Hale-Bopp). Annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society's Division for Planetary Sciences. Cambridge, Mass.
Monastersky, R. 1997. Is Earth pelted by space snowballs? Science News 151(May 31):332.
Tracking Jovian storms
The Hubble Space Telescope and the Galileo spacecraft are providing new insight about three long-lived storms on Jupiter.
Simon, A.A. 1997. Annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society's Division for Planetary Sciences. Cambridge, Mass.
Science and Society
Counseling highlighted for gene test
The final version of a consensus document on genetic testing for cystic fibrosis, prepared by a National Institutes of Health panel, includes a statement emphasizing the importance of education and counseling.
In press. Genetic testing for cystic fibrosis: National Institutes of Health consensus development statement.
Mlot, C. 1997. Panel backs widening net of genetic test. Science News 151(April 26):253.
Retirement plan for research chimps
A National Research Council report recommends that the federal government take charge of the care and management of chimpanzees used in scientific research.
Report of the National Research Council. 1997. Chimpanzees in research: Strategies for their ethical care, management, and use. National Academy Press.
Further information on the committee's recommendations can be found at http://www.nas.edu/new/
Ammonia enhances cigarettes' nicotine . . .
A common cigarette additive puts tobacco's nicotine into a form that more readily enters the lungs.
Pankow, J.F., et al. 1997. Conversion of nicotine in tobacco smoke to its volatile and available free-base form through the action of gaseous ammonia. Environmental Science & Technology 31(August):2428.
Bower, B. 1994. In the mood for a smoke. Science News 146(Aug. 27):143.
Raloff, J. 1996. New signs of nicotine's addictiveness. Science News 150(July 20):38.
______. 1994. Feds investigating Y-1's production. Science News 146(July 9):30.
______. 1994. Some cigarette makers manipulate nicotine. Science News 146(July 2):7.
______. 1994. What's in a cigarette? Science News 145(May 21):330.
______. 1994. The great nicotine debate. Science News 145(May 14)314.
______. 1994. Cigarettes: Are they doubly addictive? Science News 145(May 7):294.
. . . and music videos their image
A large percentage of music videos aired on television during hours when children watch feature role models who drink or smoke.
DuRant, R.H., et al. 1997. Tobacco and alcohol use behaviors portrayed in music videos: A content analysis. American Journal of Public Health 87(July):1131.
Fackelmann, K.A. 1991. Selling smoke to teenagers and toddlers? Science News 140(Dec. 14):390.
Can Grain Yields Keep Pace?
Stiff challenges face today's breeders--and tomorrow's farmers
World cereal grain production is climbing at roughly half the pace of population growth, raising questions about what can be done to make up for the anticipated shortfall.
Avery, D.T. In press. Agricultural research: The most vital investment for people and the environment. Issues in Science and Technology.
Brown, L.R. 1997. Can we raise grain yields fast enough? World Watch 10(July-August):8.
Crosson, P. 1997. Agricultural research: The key to sustainable agriculture. Perspectives on the Long-Term Global Food Situation Spring.
Sinclair, T.R. In press. Yield plateaus in grain crops: The topography of yield increase.
Ausubel, J.H. 1993. 2020 vision. The Sciences 33(November-December)14.
Brown, L.R. 1995. Who Will Feed China? New York: W.W. Norton.
Cohen, J.E. 1996. How Many People Can the Earth Support? New York: W.W. Norton.
Crosson, P. 1996. Who will feed China? Perspectives on the Long-Term Global Food Situation Spring.
Ehrlich, P.R., A.H. Ehrlich, and G.C. Daily. 1995. The Stork and the Plow. New York: Grosset/Putnam.
El-Sharkawy. 1993. Drought-tolerant cassava for Africa, Asia, and Latin America. BioScience 43(July-August):441.
Engelman, R. and P. LeRoy. 1995. Conserving land: Population and sustainable food production. Washington, D.C.: Population Action International.
Fedoroff, N.V. 1997. Food for a hungry world: We must find ways to increase agricultural productivity. Chronicle of Higher Education 43(June 20):B4.
Ilg, R.E. 1995. The changing face of farm employment. Monthly Labor Review April:3.
Jikun, H., and S. Rozelle. 1995. Environmental stress and grain yields in China. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 77(November):853.
Khush, G.S. 1995. Breaking the yield frontier of rice. GeoJournal 35(March):329.
Plucknett, D.L. 1993. International agricultural research for the next century. BioScience 43(July-August):432.
______. 1995. Modern varieties--their real contribution to food supply and equity. GeoJournal 35(March):275.
Postel, S. 1995. Dividing the waters: Food security, ecosystem health, and the new politics of scarcity. World Watch 132.
Raloff, J. 1996. Finding food for all. Science News Online (Nov. 16).
______. 1996. Foreign aid's grainy dividends. Science News 150(Oct. 5):218.
______. 1996. Feeding China's growing appetite. Science News Online (Sept. 7).
______. 1996. The human numbers crunch. Science News 149(June 22):396.
Waggoner, P.E., J.H. Ausubel, and I.K. Wernick. 1996. Lightening the tread of population on the land: American examples. Population and Development Review 22(September):531.
A Green Clean
New detergents dissolve obstacles to pollutionfree solvents
Carbon dioxide may be the ideal replacement for the hazardous organic chemicals typically used in dry cleaning and plastics manufacturing.
Eckert, C.A., B.L. Knutson, and P.G. Debenedetti. 1996. Supercritical fluids as solvents for chemical and materials processing. Nature 383(Sept. 26):313.
McClain, J.B. . . . J.M. DeSimone, et al. 1996. Design of nonionic surfactants for supercritical carbon dioxide. Science 274(Dec. 20):2049.
1989. Researchers make low-cholesterol milk. Science News 135(April 15):238.
1988. New way to find contaminants in meat. Science News 133(July 23):63.
Raloff, J. 1997. Need greener solvents? Go to PARIS. Science News 151(June 21):391.
_____. 1996. EPA honors a greening of U.S. industry. Science News 150(July 13):22.