Health

Japan seeks new form of flu vaccine
March 10, 2008 07:35 AM - Reuters

TOKYO (Reuters) - A group of Japanese researchers has developed a substance that could potentially help make flu vaccines effective for multiple strains of the disease, including strains of the bird flu virus, Japan's National Institute of Infectious Diseases said on Monday. The substance faces a lot more testing but investors seized on media reports of it on Monday, pushing the shares of a chemical firm involved in the project, NOF Corp, up nearly 21 percent.

Hong Kong wild bird tests positive for H5N1
March 7, 2008 04:39 AM - Reuters

HONG KONG (Reuters) - A wild magpie robin in Hong Kong has tested positive for the H5N1 birdflu virus, the government said in a statement on Friday. The bird was found and collected on February 29 near the Tai Po Kau nature reserve in the New Territories.

How to Stop a Hurricane, Cow-Free Steak, and Other Amazing Scientific Innovations
March 4, 2008 09:14 AM - ,

Studying rice may not sound like the world's most exciting job. But think again: One plant biologist, Dr. Monty Jones, has made the study of rice his life's work – and as a result of his amazing innovations in the field, he's dramatically improved the lives of millions of farmers and the general population throughout West Africa.

Mysterious Disease Claims Lives Of More Than 10,000 Bats In New York Area
February 29, 2008 09:14 AM - Indiana State University

Last year at four caves near Albany, N.Y., more than 10,000 bats died from a mysterious disease involving a white fungus growing on some bats’ noses, leading researchers to dub it “white-nose syndrome.” The mounting death toll stopped last year when spring arrived and the bats left the caves. But the deaths returned with a vengeance after the bats went into hibernation this winter. With 14 known caves infected across New York, Vermont and Massachusetts, scientists estimate as many as 500,000 bats may currently be affected with the syndrome.

Mexico to ban smoking in eateries, public spaces
February 27, 2008 08:52 AM - Reuters

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican lawmakers voted on Tuesday to ban smoking in bars, restaurants and other enclosed public spaces across the country, which counts some 65,000 cigarette-related deaths each year. Joining a string of newly smoke-free countries from Britain to Uruguay, Mexico will slap fines on establishments that breach the ban, and could subject recalcitrant smokers caught illicitly puffing to up to 36 hours in jail.

Gene discovery may lead to new baldness drugs
February 25, 2008 09:05 AM - Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - Researchers have identified a gene linked to hair loss that could lead to new drugs to treat baldness. The gene is responsible for a rare hereditary form of hair loss known as Hypotrichosis simplex, a condition affecting 1 in 200,000 people, in which people begin going bald in childhood, the researchers reported in the journal Nature Genetics.

Scientists aid arrest of fake drug producers
February 22, 2008 09:52 AM - , SciDevNet

[BEIJING] The results of analyses of fake antimalarials which led to the arrests of counterfeit drug producers in China have been published. An international consortium of scientists, known as 'Operation Jupiter', conducted physical, chemical and biological analyses on 391 samples of the antimalarial drug artesunate from South-East Asian countries such as Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.

Risks of Nanotechnology Remain Uncertain
February 22, 2008 09:48 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

Toxicology experiments on nanomaterials often seem to run the same way: put some nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes, quantum dots, or other kind of nanosized structures in a petri dish, water column, soil sample, or lab test tube of choice. Then expose daphnids, microbes, zebrafish, pig lung cells, human skin cells, or other model organisms to the new and exciting materials. Sit back and see what happens.

U.N. says world fisheries face collapse
February 22, 2008 09:19 AM - Reuters

MONACO (Reuters) - A deadly combination of climate change, over-fishing and pollution could cause the collapse of commercial fish stocks worldwide within decades, said Achim Steiner, head of the United Nations Environment Program. "You overlap all of this and you see you're potentially putting a death nail in the coffin of world fisheries," Steiner told reporters on Friday on the fringes of a climate conference involving more than 150 nations and 100 environment ministers.

Nintendo rolls out Wii fitness game product
February 20, 2008 11:33 AM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Games maker Nintendo Co Ltd on Wednesday said it will launch a new physical fitness game product called Wii Fit for U.S. shipping in May. The Wii Fit, which will debut on May 19, will come with a weight-and-motion sensing device called the Wii Balance Board, the company said in a statement.

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