Diabetes risk is more nurture than nature: study
December 21, 2007 11:37 AM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - In adults, the development of insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes, is influenced more by current body weight than by birth weight, results of a study in twins suggests. The results also suggest that the postnatal (after delivery) growth pattern is potentially more important in terms of later development of insulin resistance than fetal growth.

Revealed: The seven great "medical myths"
December 21, 2007 05:26 AM - Peter Griffiths, Reuters

LONDON (Reuters) - Reading in dim light won't damage your eyes, you don't need eight glasses of water a day to stay healthy and shaving your legs won't make the hair grow back faster. These well-worn theories are among seven "medical myths" exposed in a paper published on Friday in the British Medical Journal, which traditionally carries light-hearted features in its Christmas edition. Two U.S. researchers took seven common beliefs and searched the archives for evidence to support them.

Uganda's president revives plan to axe rainforest
December 21, 2007 05:16 AM - Reuters

KAMPALA (Reuters) - Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni on Friday revived a controversial plan to hand over a swathe of rainforest to a local company to be destroyed and replaced with a sugarcane plantation. In an address to his party published in newspapers, Museveni called those who oppose his plan to give 7,100 hectares or about a quarter of Mabira Forest reserve to the private Mehta group's sugar estate "criminals and charlatans."

Japan to meet Kyoto goal with extra measures: panel
December 21, 2007 05:14 AM - Reuters

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan will be able to cut as much greenhouse gas emissions as it promised under the Kyoto Protocol if additional measures, mainly extra voluntary agreements with industries and more energy conservation by households, are carried out, a top government panel said. A joint panel on climate change under the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Ministry of Environment finalized additional measures on Friday to cut emissions as the Kyoto period starts next year.

Rush for land to sweep away last Singapore village
December 21, 2007 02:05 AM - Reuters

Chillis and limes grow in a lush garden between colorful cement houses with leaking metal roofs in Kampong Buangkok, a village with no roads or computers. The sight would be nothing out of the ordinary in much of southeast Asia. But Singapore's last village, nestled in a forest clearing, is an oddity in the sophisticated city-state where skyscrapers and high-speed Internet are the norm.

China reels from worst drought in a decade
December 21, 2007 01:35 AM - Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - China is suffering its worst drought in a decade, which has left millions of people short of drinking water and has shrunk reservoirs and rivers, state media said on Friday. Hardest hit are large swathes of the usually humid south, where water levels on several major rivers have plunged to historic lows in recent months.

University to scrap relic of atomic age
December 20, 2007 07:10 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - One of the oldest artifacts of America's first experiments with nuclear power, a 70-year-old atom-busting machine, will be junked, Columbia University said on Thursday. The 60-tonne machine, called a cyclotron, has sat dormant in the basement of the New York university's physics department since 1965, when the Ivy League school sent parts of it to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington.

Economists: extreme cold weather costly, deadly
December 20, 2007 06:44 PM - UC Berkeley Newswire

BERKELEY -- Fatalities in the continental United States tend to climb for several weeks after severe cold spells, ultimately numbering 360 per chilly day and 14,380 per year, according to a new study co-authored by a University of California, Berkeley, economist. Deaths linked to extreme cold account for 0.8 percent of the nation's annual death rate and outnumber those attributed to leukemia, murder and chronic liver disease combined, the study reports. Cold-related deaths also reduce the average life expectancy of Americans by at least a decade, it says.

Ethanol producers covet existing oil pipelines
December 20, 2007 06:16 PM - By Timothy Gardner, Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The burgeoning U.S. ethanol industry is looking longingly at existing oil product pipelines for transporting the alternative fuel, an idea almost unthinkable a few years ago because of contamination fears. "As volumes increase, the economics for pipeline transport of ethanol will make a lot of sense," Mark Stowers a research and development vice president at private company POET, the largest U.S. ethanol producer, told reporters in a teleconference on Wednesday.

Some temper tantrums can be red flags: study
December 20, 2007 05:25 PM - Julie Steenhuysen, Reuters

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Children who have long, frequent or aggressive temper tantrums may be at risk of depression or disruptive disorders, U.S. researchers said on Thursday. They said tantrums were often the sign of a sick, hungry or overstimulated child. For most parents, they were a normal part of development and should be viewed as a teaching opportunity. But parents of children who hurt themselves or others and those who cannot calm themselves without help should seek medical help, they found. Healthy children tended to have less aggressive, and generally shorter tantrums.

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