Night Lights and Cancer
October 17, 1998 | Volume 154 | Number 16
Cover: Though bright nighttime illumination can extend our daily activities, it can also tamper with the body's production of a key brain hormone. Studies now hint that perturbing this hormone's production long term may render the body vulnerable to cancer. (Photo: © Frank Grant/ International Stock)
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News of the Week:
Infections May Underlie Cerebral Palsy
An abundance of immune proteins in the blood of newborns who would later suffer cerebral palsy suggests that fetal infections may cause the disease.
Botanical 'Velcro' entraps hummingbirds
The burrs of a tall weed called burdock prove a death trap for migrating hummingbirds.
Whos been eating all those sea otters?
Killer whales may account for the rapid disappearance of sea otters in the Aleutian islands.
Marginal groups thrive on the Internet
People viewed as cultural outsiders can form stable, emotionally supportive online communities.
Antarctic ozone hole reaches record size
The ozone hole above Antarctica has grown larger than the North American continent.
Medical Nobel prize says yes to NO
The 1998 Nobel Prize in Medicine honors research by Robert F. Furchgott, Louis J. Ignarro, and Ferid Murad showing that the gas nitric oxide is a signaling molecule in the cardiovascular system and many other tissues.
Physics Nobel spotlights quantum effect
Daniel C. Tsui, Horst L. Störmer, and Robert B. Laughlin won the 1998 Nobel Prize in Physics for their discovery and explanation of the fractional quantum Hall effect.
Chemistry computations earn Nobel prize
The 1998 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to Walter Kohn and John A. Pople for their development of computational methods that describe the properties and behavior of molecules.
Diabetes drug stirs cancer confusion
Though troglitazone may thwart human colon cancer in some cases, the widely prescribed drug may also trigger the cancer in genetically susceptible people.
Rats have too much on their minds
Electrically stimulating the brain's memory-forming regions makes rats fare poorly on a spatial-learning task.
EPA unveils hormone-pollutant strategy
A 573-page blueprint advises the Environmental Protection Agency on how it should decide which of the roughly 87,000 commercial chemicals to test for hormonal activity.
Passive smoking: Confirming the risks
Chronic exposure to the cigarette smoke of a spouse or coworker can increase a nonsmokers lung cancer risk by roughly 20 percent.
Fractal models for data traffic
Mathematical models used successfully to manage telephone systems don't apply to data-transmitting networks, where the duration and rate of information transfer vary more widely.
Picking off more pieces of pi
A math student has determined the five-trillionth binary digit of the number pi.
Wyoming wonder: Tiniest mammal ever?
Paleontologists have uncovered the jawbone of a 53-million-year-old mammal that weighed no more than a dollar bill.
Questions raised about oldest animal
Scientists dispute whether tracks that look like fossilized worm traces push back the origin of animals.
Does Light Have a Dark Side?
Nighttime illumination might elevate cancer risk
A host of new studies hints how exposure to light at night might foster the development of certain cancers.
Dogs and Cats in Their Dotage
Do aged pets get their own type of Alzheimers, and will a new drug help them?
Veterinarians debate whether drugs might help old dogs and cats that get disoriented and forgetful.
Letters: A Selection from Letters to the Editor
|copyright 1998 Science Service|