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University Briefs

August 8, 1988

Give Iowa State An ‘A’ For Altered Genes What can a university do when it plunges into agricultural biotechnology research in a big way—but doesn’t want the public to fear the field-testing of experimental products? Iowa State trotted out the genetics primer. This summer, the university devoted its annual teacher education program to genetic engineering, bringing high school teachers up to date on biotechnology and helping them design lesson plans for their students. Ov

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VP Candidate Lloyd Bentsen Is 'Outspoken On Science Issues'

By | August 8, 1988

WASHINGTON—While Michael Dukakis may have chosen Lloyd Bentsen as his running mate for Bentsen’s ability to win over his home state and Southern conservatives, the Democratic senator from Texas also brings to the ticket a strong interest in space research, advanced physics, and high technology. Bentsen’s record on scientific issues suggests he may be primarily motivated by economic concerns— in particular, growth for Texas. But those interests have coincided with effor

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When Language Hurts Scientists And Their Employers

By | August 8, 1988

Sajal Das started out well. A bright boy from Calcutta, he finished his undergraduate degree in India, earned a Ph.D. studying high-temperature polymers at North Carolina State University, and soon found a good R&D job at Morristown, N.J. -based Allied-Signal Corp. But then he stalled. While his United States-born colleagues went scampering up the corporate-scientific ladder, Das has stayed put, although, in his opinion, his science is every bit as good as anyone’s. The trouble, from wh

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The National Academy of Sciences’ recent report on the behavioral and social sciences reveals that federal support of this domain of science has declined over the past 16 years, even though support for other areas of science has grown substantially. The report makes a good case for the public benefits of research in behavioral and social sciences and argues for increased funding. This argument, however, is likely to fall on deafened ears, as almost every segment of the scientific communi

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Woods Hole Lab Faces Uncertain Future

By | August 8, 1988

Celebrating its centennial, the Marine Biological Laboratory adapts to a new era in which money talks as loudly as science WOODS HOLE, MASS.—When Harlyn 0. Halvorson, the new director of the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, blows out the candles for his institution’s 100th birthday this summer, no one will have to ask what he wished for. The laboratory needs more money, more room, and more molecular biology if it is to remain in the forefront of scientific research durin

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AIDS In The USA: People, Papers, And Funding

By | July 25, 1988

“Better late than never,” one might say about the U.S. federal government’s response to AIDS, first identified in 1981. Only in the past few years has the government moved aggressively to fund the battle against the epidemic. Today, al- though federal funding has greatly increased, many continue to believe that it is still below what it should be. In the spring of 1987, AIDS researcher and immunochemist Paul Naylor of George Washington University called for a tripling of the

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Also Notable

July 25, 1988

MATHEMATICS AND THE UNEXPECTED Ivar Ekeland University of Chicago Press; Chicago; 146 pages; $19.95 Ekeland writes, “This is the task I have set myself to accomplish: to sum up, in a few pictures;, the mathematics of time, which is the common background of much of contemporary science.” Like art, science has its compelling images, he argues—planets revolving around the sun in elliptical orbits, or more recently, Arnold’s cat, Smale’s horseshoe, and Thom’s c

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An International Brain Institute Is Proposed

By | July 25, 1988

Japanese instrument company is out to raise $80 million so 100 world-class scientists can explore the mind TOKYO—This time the Japanese—at least, some of them— aren’t going it alone. Sensitive to criticism that the country is unwilling to share its knowledge with the rest of the world, the president of a leading Japanese manufacturer of optical instruments is trying to promote an international institute to explore how the brain functions. The driving force behind the p

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Articles Alert

July 25, 1988

The Scientist has asked a group of experts to periodically comment upon recent articles that they have found noteworthy. Their selections, presented here In every issue, are neither endorsements of content nor the result of systematic searching. Rather they are personal choices of articles they believe the scientific community as a whole may also find interesting. Reprints of any articles cited here may be ordered through The Genuine Article, 3501 Markst St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19104, or by tel

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Association Briefs

July 25, 1988

The Astronomy News Hotline, sponsored by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, has a new number: (415) 337-1244. The Hotline’s recorded message—which is available to callers around the clock and has been in continuous operation since 1976, relays new discoveries in astronomy, special celestial events, and other items of interest to stargazers and armchair astronomers. It is written and produced by astronomer Sherwood Harrington, staff member of the Astronomical Society of the Pa

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