After a slow start, CNN Headline News saw impressive ratings gains during the first week after its revamp.

Fueled by a flurry of publicity –not all of it good — viewers tuned in to sample the net, which recently re-designed its set, hired a slew of new anchors and changed its format. In addition, bombings in Israel and Bush’s decision on stem cell research helped drive news ratings.

With its new anchor team of Andrea Thompson and Miles O’Brien in place, Headline News averaged 153,000 households and 77,000 adults in primetime, a 24% jump from the same week last year in both households and the key ad-friendly demo.

Making their day

In total day, Headline News also saw an improvement, averaging 154,000 households (a 25% gain from the same week the year before) and 66,000 adults 25-54 (an 18% gain from the year before during the same comparable week).

The net saw some of its biggest gains in the afternoon. From 3-6 p.m., an average of 214,000 households and 93,000 adults 25-54 tuned in, a 61% jump in households and 60% jump in adults 25-54 over last year during the same frame.