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An Astrophysicist's Pursuit of Science

By | May 2, 1988

Aesthetics and Motivation in Science. S. Chandrasekhar. The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1987. 170 pp. $23.95. In this small, attractive volume, the well-known astrophysicist Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar presents seven lectures on the motivation of scientists, the meaning of beauty in science, and contrasting patterns of creativity in science and the arts. Presented on various occasions during a 40-year period, the lectures are printed without alteration. Thus, as Chandrasekhar notes,

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WASHINGTON--Between 12,000 and 14,000 scientists are expected to attend the 88th annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) in Miami Beach next week. The six-day meeting, which begins Sunday, May 8, will feature 315 sessions (including poster sessions), exhibits by more than 300 companies, a placement service and a special student science day. Also, ASM’s Committee on Continuing Education of the Board of Education and Training is sponsponsoring 24 advance workshops for

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Baruch Blumberg: Science on TV

By | May 2, 1988

For cancer researcher and medical historian Baruch S. Blumberg, communication is central element in the scientific enterprise This month, many Americans will see him in that role when public television station across the country broadcast "Plagues." A host of the one-hour program, Blumberg traces the origins of several deadly epidemics: malaria, which may have contributed to as many as half of all human deaths to date the 1849 outbreak of cholera in London; the 1918 Spanish flu; and Legionnair

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Better Living Through Organic Chemistry

By | May 2, 1988

This ink was compounded with the assistance of organic chemistry. The paper on which it is printed is another expression of that science. So, too, are the trees whence that paper came and the receptors in your eyes by which you see. Lift up your eyes. Except for glass (inorganic chemistry), it is unlikely that you can see anything that is uninfluenced by organic chemistry. Even the metal and concrete you see probably have been painted and waterproofed. Chemistry, especially the organic vari

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Biologists in Demand

By | May 2, 1988

Demand for biologists in disciplines represented by member societies of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB), especially at the postdoctoral training/research associate level, shows strong indications of exceeding the supply significantly. A combination of increasing numbers of positions and decreasing output from universities appears to be at work here; growth in size and number of biotechnology companies and decline in numbers of appropriate age groups which

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Toronto--Canada faces a bleak future without a large increase in federal spending on science, according to a new report prepared for Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. The National Advisory Board on Science and Technology, composed of academic, labor and industry leaders, found that Canada ranked last among eight industrial countries in several aspects of scientific achievement. Those areas included overall and industrial R&D spending as a percentage of gross domestic product, international pate

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D Jobs Threatened

By | May 2, 1988

LONDON--A plan to have British industry pick up the cost of "near-market" research may jeopardize the jobs of thousands of agriculture and food researchers at state-funded institutes. Officials at the British Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food are reviewing the department’s $200 million annual budget to find which portions should be transferred to industry over the next two years. That approach parallels a recently announced policy that the Thatcher government would support R

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WEST BERLIN--The West German government has proposed a ban on the creation of human embryos for research and measures to determine the sex of fetuses developed by artificial insemination. Scientific organizations see the legislation as a threat to all research in the field. Justice Minister Hans Englehard and Health Minister Rita Süssmuth and Minister of Research and Technology Heinz Riesenhuber have been asked to prepare a draft of what is being called an embryo protection bill. It fol

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The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) is holding its 72nd annual meeting this week in Las Vegas. The meeting, one of the world’s largest scientific gatherings, features more than 9,000 scientific papers and nearly 1,000 scientific, technical and educational exhibits. FASEB officials expect more than 20,000 individuals, including 16,000 scientists, to attend the meeting. In addition to sitting in on conventional scientific sessions, attendees have the opp

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Genetic Engineers Call for Regulation

By | May 2, 1988

CARDIFF, WALES--Scientists at the First International Conference on the Release of Genetically Engineered Microorganisms here have called for international guidelines on dissemination of new organisms. But they stopped short of formal recommendations on international regulation of genetic engineering. Deciding against a final communique, they deputized a member of the UK government’s watchdog committee over recombinant DNA, John Beringer, to carry their concerns to the Organization for

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