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Is the FDA's drug review process breaking down?

By | December 20, 2000

Since 1997 the US FDA has banned use of 11 prescription drugs because of serious side effects. The FDA says it's not the drug approval process but inappropriate prescribing that is responsible.

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MPs say 'yes' to stem cell research

By | December 20, 2000

British Members of Parliament have voted in favour of allowing therapeutic cloning.

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Cardiovascular effects of 'ecstasy' revealed

By | December 19, 2000

The drug ecstasy produces dose-related increases in myocardial oxygen demand without an increase in contractility.

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Estrogens and bone density in elderly men

By | December 19, 2000

Decreased serum estradiol levels, not testosterone levels, are predictive of osteopenia in older men.

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Controlling the bacterial cell cycle

By | December 18, 2000

In the 15 December Science, Laub et al. find that a full 19% of the genome of the bacterium Caulobacter crescentus is subject to cell-cycle-specific regulation (Science 2000, 290:2144-2148). A surprising number of genes are induced, as in yeast, just before they are needed. Other genes, such as those directing the construction of the flagella and pilus, are induced in transcriptional cascades, with the order of induction reflecting the order of assembly of the respective apparatus. Laub et al. a

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Craig Venter is 'Scientist of the Year'

By | December 18, 2000

magazine's 'Person of the Year'.

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Stem cell decision time for the UK

By | December 18, 2000

The British parliament is to vote on Tuesday 19 December on whether to allow research into stem cell technology to be extended beyond its current boundaries.

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Plant duplications

By | December 15, 2000

In the 15 December Science, Vision et al. find that four large-scale duplication events, followed by gene loss, have shaped the Arabidopsis genome (Science 2000, 290:2114-2116). The duplication events are identified by first delineating 103 duplicated blocks containing seven or more genes. These duplicates are then assigned an age based on the sequence divergence between copies. The duplicates fall into four main age groups, all dating to the Mesozoic era (65 to 245 million years ago), which was

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Plant transcription: it's different

By | December 15, 2000

In the 15 December Science, Riechmann et al. compare transcriptional regulators from plants (Arabidopsis thaliana), animals (the worm Caenorhabditis elegans and the fly Drosophila melanogaster) and fungi (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). They conclude that new motifs, shuffled motifs, and old motifs put to new uses make plant transcriptional regulation very different from that found in other eukaryotes (Science 2000, 290:2105-2110). Arabidopsis has, by their estimation, 1,533 transcriptional regulator

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Platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa should be blocked before stenting

By | December 15, 2000

Eptifibatide, a platelet glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitor substantially reduces ischemic complications in coronary stent interventions and could become a routine pre-treatment in stent coronary implantation, concludes a study published in 16 December Lancet (Lancet 2000 356:2037).In a prospective study, Dr James Tcheng and colleagues from Duke University Medical Centre in North Carolina recruited 2064 patients who were undergoing coronary stent implantation. Immediately before the procedure, pati

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