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ACS News Service Weekly PressPac: August 08, 2012

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News Items in This Edition

Contrary to popular belief, purified drinking water from home faucets contains millions to hundreds of millions of widely differing bacteria per gallon, and scientists have discovered a plausible way to manipulate those populations of mostly beneficial microbes to potentially benefit consumers. Their study appears in ACS’ journal Environmental Science & Technology

With the best explosive detectors often unable to sniff out the tiny amounts of TNT released from terrorist bombs in airports and other public places, scientists are reporting a potential solution. Their research in ACS’ journal Analytical Chemistry describes development of a device that concentrates TNT vapors in the air so that they become more detectable

In an advance that could be used in masks to protect against nerve gas, scientists are reporting development of proteins that are up to 15,000 times more effective than their natural counterpart in destroying chemical warfare agents. Their report appears in ACS’ journal Biochemistry

Scientists are reporting an advance toward treating disease with minute capsules containing not drugs — but the DNA and other biological machinery for making the drug. In an article in ACS’ journal Nano Letters, they describe engineering micro- and nano-sized capsules that contain the genetically coded instructions, plus the read-out gear and assembly line…

A back-to-the-future technology, first used more than 100 years ago, has put a new form of wood on the market – a veritable “miracle wood” that resists the moisture-induced bowing, swelling, cupping, shrinking and cracking that have been downsides of natural wood for thousands of years. The new “acetylated wood” is the topic of a story in the current edition of Chemical

Journalists’ Resources

About the PressPac

The ACS PressPac consists of alerts to journalists about potentially newsworthy research published in ACS journals and Chemical & Engineering News. These alerts, or news tips, are not traditional press releases that provide comprehensive coverage of the research. Journalists can read the full text of the research provided with each alert and use the contact information for the lead authors to resolve any questions about the research or its newsworthiness.

  • News media registration for ACS’ 244th National Meeting & Exposition in Philadelphia
    News media registration is now open for the American Chemical Society’s (ACS’) 244th National Meeting & Exposition in Philadelphia, August 19-23, 2012. The event will include more than 8,600 reports on new discoveries in medicine and health, food and nutrition, energy, the environment and other fields where chemistry plays a central role. One of the largest scientific conferences of 2012, the meeting will take place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and area hotels.
  • Press releases, briefings, and more from ACS’ 243rd National Meeting
    www.eurekalert.org/acsmeet.php

    http://www.ustream.tv/channel/acslive
  • C&EN Video Spotlight: Artificial Jellyfish Could Make Waves in Tissue Repair
    Researchers at Caltech and Harvard have made a polymer sheet that swims like a jellyfish. In this video, Janna Nawroth, a graduate student at Caltech, explains how the researchers combined a printed protein, some rat heart cells and flexible silicone to make the mock marine animal. The researchers say that the jellyfish mimic could help them learn about jellyfish evolution or might even help them test artificial heart valves or cardiac drugs in the future. Watch the video.
  • Must-reads from C&EN: Golds and Silvers in the Other Olympics
    The 44th International Chemistry Olympiad, hosted by the U.S. for the first time in 20 years, was an epic contest of mental gymnastics. For the results, including a gold and two silvers for the U.S. team, contact newsroom@acs.org.
  • ACS Pressroom Blog
    The ACS Office of Public Affairs’ (OPA) pressroom blog highlights research from ACS’ 41 peer-reviewed journals and National Meetings.
  • Bytesize Science blog
    Educators and kids, put on your thinking caps: The American Chemical Society has a blog for Bytesize Science, a science podcast for kids of all ages.
  • ACS satellite pressroom: Daily news blasts on Twitter
    The satellite press room has become one of the most popular science news sites on Twitter. To get our news blasts and updates, create a free account at https://twitter.com/signup. Then visit http://twitter.com/ACSpressroom and click the ‘join’ button beneath the press room logo.
  • C&EN on Twitter
    Follow @cenmag <http://twitter.com/cenmag> for the latest news in chemistry and dispatches from our blog, C&ENtral Science <http://centralscience.org>.
  • ACS Press Releases
    Press releases
    on a variety of chemistry-related topics.

ACS Videos

The American Chemical Society encourages news organizations, museums, educational organizations, and other web sites to embed links to these videos.

Spellbound: How Kids Became Scientists
The road to a Nobel Prize began for one scientist in elementary school when his father placed a sign on his bedroom door proclaiming him to be a “doctor.” This is just one of the many experiences that helped launch the careers of scientists from diverse backgrounds who are featured in a new ACS video series called Spellbound: How Kids Became Scientists.

Prized Science video series
Prized Science: How the Science Behind ACS Awards Impacts Your Life
video series is new for 2011! In the first episode, see how Ahmed Zewail, Ph.D., developed a technology that's paving the way for new medicines, new fuels and new materials that will give people longer, healthier, happier lives. Zewail is the winner of the 2011 Priestley Medal. The second episode features the work of David Craik, Ph.D., who made advances toward new drugs for treating health problems that affect millions of people around the world, including antibiotic-resistant bacteria and AIDS. Craik is the winner of the ACS 2011 Ralph F. Hirschmann Award in Peptide Chemistry, sponsored by Merck Research Laboratories. More episodes will appear later in the year. The series is available at the Prized Science website and on DVD.

First Living, Dancing Periodic Table of the Elements
That famous chart displaying the chemical elements that make up everything on Earth — a fixture on the walls of classrooms and labs — literally comes alive in this new video from the American Chemical Society (ACS). Chemists Can Dance! features scores of chemists wearing symbols representing the elements, kicking up their heels to the tune of an original rap song. It's all part of ACS' celebration of the International Year of Chemistry. Check out the fun and share the link.

A Day Without Chemistry
Imagine a day without cars, electric lights, TV, telephones, safe food, and water, medicine, clothing, your house, and thousands of other familiar objects that make up modern society. Do it, and you are imagining a day in a world without chemistry. ACS explores that thought-provoking premise in a new high-definition video released as part of the celebration of the International Year of Chemistry. A Day Without Chemistry follows a person who sees more and more everyday necessities and conveniences disappear before his widening eyes.

Other videos:

  • The Chemistry of Sourdough Bread
  • The Chemistry of Fireworks
  • The Chemistry of Grilling and Barbecuing

ACS Podcasts

  • Global Challenges/Chemistry Solutions
    This special series of ACS podcasts focuses on some of the 21st Century’s most daunting challenges, and how chemists and other scientists are finding solutions. Subscribe at iTunes or listen and access other resources at the ACS web site www.acs.org/GlobalChallenges.
  • SciFinder® Podcasts
    Interested in healthful plant phytochemicals, nanotechnology, or green chemistry? Check out the SciFinder series of podcasts, which explore a vast array of current interest topics and new discoveries in the 21st century. The SciFinder podcasts are available in English, Chinese, Japanese, and Portuguese.

And Don’t Miss…

General Chemistry Glossary
Simple definitions and explanations of chemistry terms.

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Web site on everyday chemicals
Whether you want to learn more about caffeine, benzoyl peroxide (acne treatment), sodium chloride (table salt), or some other familiar chemical, CAS Common Chemistry can help. The new Web site provides non-chemists and others with useful information about everyday chemicals by searching either a chemical name or a corresponding CAS Registry Number. The site includes about 7,800 chemicals of general interest as well as all 118 elements from the Periodic Table, providing alternative names, molecular structures, a Wikipedia link, and other information.

Colors of Chemistry Photo Contest Seeks Entries
Each year in the Colors of Chemistry calendar, CAS highlights remarkable chemistry from the CAS databases with exceptional photography from around the world. This year, they want to see your great photos in the Colors of Chemistry Photo Contest. Each month features a new theme for photographers to explore while on vacation, relaxing at home, or at work in the lab. For more information, visit the Colors of Chemistry website at colorsofchemistry.org.

Science Connections from CAS
CAS - Science Connections
is a series of articles that showcases the value of CAS databases in light of important general-interest science and technology news. Topics range from fruit flies to Nobel Prize winners, with the CAS - Science Connections series pointing to CAS databases for a more complete understanding of the latest news.


Note to Journalists and Other Viewers

This is the latest American Chemical Society (ACS) Office of Public Affairs Weekly PressPac with news from ACS’ 41 peer-reviewed journals and Chemical & Engineering News.

This information is intended for your personal use in news gathering and reporting and should not be distributed to others. Anyone using advance ACS Office of Public Affairs Weekly PressPac information for stocks or securities dealing may be guilty of insider trading under the federal Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

Please cite the individual journal, or the American Chemical Society, as the source of this information.


The American Chemical Society is a non-profit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 164,000 members, ACS is the world’s largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.