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AIDS Funding Outlook Hazy

By | November 17, 1986

WASHINGTON-The drive to quadruple federal funding for AIDS research to $1 billion annually faces an uncertain future within the Reagan administration and in Congress. A star-studded joint committee of the National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine has urged the massive increase after an intensive six-month study. Its report, issued late last month, also chides the National Institutes of Health for not enlisting enough university researchers in its effort to better understand the

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Animals An Issue In Japan

By | November 17, 1986

TOKYO-Tucked away in the back yard of most animal research institutes is a humble pagoda. Armed with a bunch of flowers, some food and water, scientists visit this memorial several times each year to join a Buddhist priest in offering comfort to the souls of their laboratory animals. That ceremony represents the traditional Japanese attitude toward the welfare of animals. But the protests in Other countries against the use of laboratory animals have begun to raise consciousness and generate pres

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D Budget Up Again

By | November 17, 1986

The information for these stories and the accompanying chart was gathered by freelance writers Bob Westgate and Susan Walton. WASHINGTON-Funding for science research, part of an overall federal budget that is expected to grow little in 1987, has increased significantly in several areas. Congress once again failed to approve appropriations bills for individual departments. Instead, on the day before it adjourned last month, it approved a $576 billion continuing resolution covering most government

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Danes Ban Genetic Release

November 17, 1986

COPENHAGEN-The release of genetically engineered organisms into the environment us now against the law in Denmark. The Law on Gene Technology and Environment, passed this summer, is unique among actions taken by other countries in its being an Act of Parliament. here, rules concerning recombinant DNA research are only advisory. The Minister for Environment has the authority to approve deliberate release of such organisms "in special cases" as defined by the law. The minister also must approve th

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Discovering Ant Language

By | November 17, 1986

In 1953, while I was a graduate student at Harvard University, I heard a lecture by Konrad Lorenz on ethology. The experience illustrates the principle that new fields are impelled by one to several great ideas expressible in a few words. The one offered by Lorenz that captured my imagination was the concept of the sign stimulus. Animal behavior, Lorenz said, is organized into modules of fixed-action patterns, complex sequences of sensory and motor actions that accomplish something for the organ

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EC Budget Under Fire

November 17, 1986

BRUSSELS-Stalemate appears likely as Common Market research ministers grapple with a plan from the European Commission to spend 6.2 billion pounds ($9.3 billion) on R&D during the next five years. Britain, West Germany and France have broken from their nine BC partners in arguing for a more modest budget than one that would double the amount spent during the previous five years. Several countries also want the Com mission to separate elements of the program so nations can support individual

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Fuqua: Advice to Scientists

By | November 17, 1986

Last March, Rep. Don Fuqua (D-Fla.) startled many in the science community by announcing that he was calling it quits after 24 years in the House, all of it serving on various science-oriented committees. The chairman of the House Committee on Science and Technology for the past eight years, the 53-year-old Fuqua has decided to embark on a second career as president of the Aerospace Industries Association, a Washington-based organization representing space and defense contractors. Under his dire

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ITHACA, N.Y.-Scientists and engineers in American industry desperately need computing power far beyond the capability of today's fastest supercomputers. The computer industry hopes to fill that need-with the help of university researchers. That vision emerged during a conference on supercomputing held last month at Cornell University's Center for Theory and Simulation in Science and Engineering. The facility is one office university centers for research on super-computing established last year b

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Insurance Pool Formed

By | November 17, 1986

WASHINGTON-A group of biotechnology companies have agreed to form a captive insurance plan to help them cope with the rising cost of liability insurance. The captive plan will give participating companies both product liability and directors and officers' coverage, explained Jeffrey Gibbs, associate general counsel for the 175-member Association of Bio technology Companies. It will provide the 24 companies now interested in the plan with an aggregate limit of $2.5 million in liability coverage,

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Is Eureka Too Big For Europe?

By | November 17, 1986

LONDON-Next month in Stockholm the 19 members of the Eureka project will discuss whether to accept non-European countries. If they agree to an expansion, the fledgling research enterprise will have taken another big step toward its goal of stimulating collaboration among nations on high technology projects. The Eureka project is meant to force collaborative research and development partnerships between companies drawn from at least two different European nations. The goal is to develop new comm

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