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LONDON—The deaths of four scientists involved in defense research, and the mysterious disappearance of a fifth, are causing considerable speculation here. Although the police initially treated the incidents as unrelated, opposition politicians have highlighted what could be a significant common factor—the men all were involved with advanced signal processing and software. Last August Vimal Dajibhal, 24, a computer programmer with Marconi Underwater Systems, was found underneath a bri

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Radiation Biology Needs Physicians

By | April 20, 1987

The world faces a growing deficiency in the number of medical scientists who are well informed about the delayed effects of ionizing radiation. This deficiency is growing because the physicians who entered the field in the early 1950s are now reaching retirement age. No one is following them because career opportunities in human radiation biology have become less appealing than those in other fields. The excitement about research in radiation biology has diminished over the years since the dropp

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Science, Technology and Superpowers

By | April 20, 1987

Cooperation in Science and Technology: An Evaluation of the U.S.-Soviet Agreement. Catherine P. AiIes and Arthur E. Pardee Jr. Westview Press, Boulder, CO, 1986. 368 pp. $28.50. After-the-fact appraisal of the 1972-82 intergovernmental agreement on scientific and technical exchanges between the superpowers turns out to present the old question of whether the glass was half full or half empty relative to what was hoped for. SRI International analyst Catherine Ailes and consultant Arthur Pardee Jr

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So They Say

April 20, 1987

Verbatim excerpts from the media on the conduct of science. The Middle Ground in Animal Rights Through developing principles governing specific aspects of research, professional and regulatory groups are now formulating standards and procedures to ensure that laboratory animals are treated humanely. The overall aim is not to halt all animal research but rather to refine experiments to minimize animal pain, suffering, and distress; to reduce the number of animals used; and to replace animals with

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Stable Funds Fuel Smithsonian's Risky Research

By | April 20, 1987

WASHINGTON—David Challinor smiles as he explains how Smithsonian Institution scientists benefit from about a dozen National Science Foundation grants even though Congress has prohibited the organization from asking NSF for money. "It just takes some imagination. One way is to join a consortium. Another is to approach the NSF with a project it wants done. As any Washington bureaucrat knows, there's more than one way to skin a cat." In fact, the 66-year-old Challinor knows more than most bur

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The Humane Community Does Do the Funding

By | April 20, 1987

As a scientist and an ex-psychologist, I am continually intrigued with the lengths to which psychologists will go to justify their shoddy little experiments at the expense of other animals, human and nonhuman alike. Susan Suarez certainly has my vote for "Rationalizer of the Year" with her letter "Humane Society Should Stop Criticizing, Start Funding," commenting on a letter by Lockwood and Stephens (The Scientist, December 15, 1986, p. 10 and February 9, 1987, p. 10). The humane community is, i

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The Wellcome Trust at Fifty

By | April 20, 1987

Physic and Philanthropy: A History of the Weilcome Trust 1936-1986. A. Rupert Hall and B.A. Bembridge. Cambridge University Press, New York, 1986. 479 pp. $39.50. The Wellcome Trust has evolved into one of the great foundations of the world. Founded 50 years ago by Sir Henry Wellcome, the American-born sole owner of the Burroughs-Wellcome drug empire, the Trust has had a strong impact on medical research throughout the years. Its "prime object" is "the endowment of medical science," with special

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To Archimedes' Bathtub

By | April 20, 1987

Not only has the replacement of the bath by the shower aided in the spread of Legionnaire's disease, it may well lead to a decline in inventiveness. The earliest account of scientific discovery that has come down to us is the story of Archimedes, who solved a problem in applied science (a non-destructive assay of a gold crown) while in his bath. Whether or not the legend is true, bathers will know that the solitude and relaxation of lying in a hot bath—or a cold one during a sticky Sicilia

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Wall Street Is Bullish on the Right Ph.Ds

By | April 20, 1987

As science spawns a growing number of technically sophisticated industrial and consumer goods, some financial houses have been hiring scientists to help analyze the products and their markets. "Our approach is simple," said William Welty, managing director of research for Hambrecht & Quist, based in San Francisco. "We look for Ph.D.s to analyze those industries where rapid scientific advances will make a major difference to the success or failure of its companies. A classic case right now is bio

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X-ray Crystallographers Wooed by Drug Firms

By | April 20, 1987

CHICAGO—Pharmaceutical firms are raiding universities to recruit X-ray crystallographers with expertise in biological molecules at a rate that threatens to undercut academic research in the field. "This trend may weaken the university training of molecular biologists, and impair the development of protein engineering, which might remain limited to those projects targeted by industry," contended Daniel J. Goldstein of the University of Buenos Aires at the annual meeting of the American Asso

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