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Scientists in Philippines Predict Gains

By | April 6, 1987

MANILA—A new national Constitution does more for the Philippines than endorse the political reforms of President Corazon Aquino. Scientists hope it will also stem the emigration of doctors and researchers, encourage research to improve the country's economy, and promote involvement in R&D by the private sector. More than 12,000 Filipino scientists and engineers emigrated between 1966 and 1978, according to Fernando Sanchez, past president of the Association of Philippine Medical Colleges.

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"Most fortunately, Kendrew made a favorable impression on Luria: like Kalckar, he was civilized and in addition supported the Labor Party." That is how James Watson introduces us to John Kendrew, toward the beginning of The Double Helix. Later in his highly individualistic memoir, Watson recounts how he accepted what looked like "an open invitation to tuberculosis" when he arrived in England in 1951. After having difficulty finding digs in Cambridge, he recalls how "John and Elizabeth Kendrew re

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So They Say

April 6, 1987

Something looks very wrong with the management of the President's Star Wars missile defense program. Instead of clear and steady progress toward establishing its technological feasibility, the program's managers seem to shift emphasis every few months from one vaunted breakthrough to another. Last year the free-electron laser was hot stuff; now attention veers to crash development of space-based rockets. The primary goal seems political: getting production lines running before President Reagan l

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Superconductivity Surge Mobilizes Lab Chiefs

By | April 6, 1987

NEW YORK—A surge of new research in superconductivity that began late last year is posing as much of a challenge to research managers and administrators as to solid-state physicists. Their problem: How best to allocate scarce people, funds and equipment to take advantage of the new fervor in this sector of science, in which the maximum temperature at which resistance-free transmission of electric current occurs has soared. Although physicists warn that several technical hurdles remain, com

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Testing Firm's Warning About Ferries Unheeded

By | April 6, 1987

LONDON—Last month's sinking of the English Channel ferry the Herald of Free Enterprise has focused attention on a group of scientists and engineers whose unique expertise has been neglected in the rash of recent privatizations in Britain. Companies operating similar "roll-on, roll-off" (or Ro-Ro) ferries have not responded to efforts by the managers of the now privately owned company British Maritime Technology (BMT) to point out the design weaknesses of such craft. One consequence is that

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The Moral Costs of IVF Research

By | April 6, 1987

The Vatican's March 10 condemnation of artificial methods of reproduction, including in vitro fertilization (IVF), is certain to be the cause of considerable controversy both within and without the scientific community, and among Catholics and non-Catholics alike. The pronouncement by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith says that "uncontrollable application of such techniques could lead to unforeseeable and damaging consequences for civil society." In addition to outlawing artificial

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The Scoop on Science Journalism

By | April 6, 1987

Selling Science: How the Press Covers Science and Technology. Dorothy Nelkin. W.H. Freeman, New York, 1987. 182 pp. $16.95. In Selling Science, Dorothy Nelkin—author of books on such topics as intellectual property and technological risk—tells the reader almost everything he or she might want to know about the complex relations between science and the media. On the premise that the public gets its images of and information about science from the press rather than from television, Ne

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WASHINGTON—Resignations of top officials at two biotechnology companies and predictions of lackluster earnings sent their stock prices tumbling last month. Applied Biosystems Inc. announced that Sam Eletr, the company's founder and chairman, was stepping down for personal reasons. It also said it expected third-quarter earnings to decline because of product delays and weak orders from Europe. Following that news, its stock dropped from $41.40 to $30 a share. The Foster City, Calif., firm,

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UN Opens Trieste Biotech Lab

By | April 6, 1987

TRIESTE—This week Arturo Falaschi takes charge of 900 square meters of laboratory and office space in a newly completed facility just outside Trieste in northern Italy. He does so as director of the Italian portion of the new International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), set up by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) to bring the benefits of recombinant DNA and associated technologies to Third World countries. The Trieste lab and its coun

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Undergrad Research Budget Up

By | April 6, 1987

WASHINGTON—The National Science Foundation plans to increase the budget of a new research program for undergraduates after receiving an unexpectedly large number of applicants from universities and other research facilities around the country. Rushing to meet a March 1 deadline on less than three months' notice, researchers submitted proposals to hire groups of students to work at more than 600 sites as part of NSF's new Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program. Alan Leshner,

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