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ACS News Service Weekly PressPac: November 16, 2011

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News Items in This Edition

Scientists are reporting development and successful initial testing of the first practical “smart” material that may supply the missing link in efforts to use in medicine a form of light that can penetrate four inches into the human body. Their report on the new polymer or plastic-like material, which has potential for use in diagnosing diseases and engineer new human tissues in the lab…

Defying common sense, ducks that plump up less produce the finest foie gras — that rich, buttery French delicacy made from goose or duck livers and sometimes eaten as slices atop lightly toasted bread — scientists are reporting. The report appears in ACS’ Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry

Is the emerging field of nanomedicine a breathtaking technological revolution that promises remarkable new ways of diagnosing and treating diseases? Or does it portend the release of dangerous nanoparticles, nanorobots or nanoelectronic devices that will wreak havoc in the body? A new review of more than 500 studies on the topic concludes that neither…

Scientists are reporting that household washing machines seem to be a major source of so-called “microplastic” pollution — bits of polyester and acrylic smaller than the head of a pin — that they now have detected on ocean shorelines worldwide. Their report describing this potentially harmful material appears in ACS’ journal Environmental Science & Technology

Just imagine: Instead of sending Grandma a holiday photo of the family for her fridge, you call up the image on your computer monitor, click “print,” and your printer produces a three-dimensional plastic model ready for hanging on the holiday tree. Scenes like that — in which homes have 3-D printers that build solid objects on demand — are fast approaching reality…

Journalists’ Resources

  • Press releases, briefings, and more from ACS’ 242nd National Meeting
    www.eurekalert.org/acsmeet.php

    http://www.ustream.tv/channel/acslive
  • Must-reads from C&EN: The importance of taking medicines at certain times of the day
    New insights into the human body’s internal clock raise the possibility that medicines may work best when taken at certain times of the day, and that some potential new drugs never made it to the pharmacy shelf because scientists tested them on mice or people at the wrong time. For the full story, contact Michael Bernstein at m_bernstein@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.
  • International Year of Chemistry
    The 63rd General Assembly of the United Nations proclaimed 2011 the International Year of Chemistry (IYC-2011) to increase global recognition of how chemistry and related sciences contribute to everyday life and the future. ACS’ IYC site is a gateway for information on the global celebration of chemistry and its role in other sciences, literally from astronomy to zoology.

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:

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 163,000 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.