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Buying your own lab

By | June 9, 2006

Last November, we linkurl:reported;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/15837/ that the owners of an upscale spa in New York State had 'offered $10 million to the University of Chicago for the Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay, Wis. ? one of the nation's most historically important, if no longer scientifically advanced, observatories.' Well, they got it. According to a press release this week from the resort firm, Mirbeau will build a 100-room retreat and 73 small homes on the 30 acres

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Babraham appoints Wakelam

By | June 5, 2006

The UK?s Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) linkurl:announced;http://www.bbsrc.ac.uk/media/pressreleases/06_06_01_wakelam.html a couple of days ago that it had appointed Michael Wakelam, currently of the University of Birmingham, to be its director as of January 1 next year. Wakelam looks to be a good match for the institute, which conducts research and training in the mechanisms of cell communication and gene regulation. His own area of expertise is cell signaling,

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Fraud on the wing

By | May 29, 2006

The linkurl:__New Yorker__;http://www.newyorker.com delves into a scientific fraud this week (see below). This one, upward of five decades old, was uncovered largely by ornithologist Pamela Rasmussen, an assistant prof at Michigan State who is co-author of ?Birds of South Asia: The Ripley Guide,? linkurl:reviewed here.;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v438/n7070/full/438916a.html In preparing the guide, she took to task one Colonel Richard Meinertzhagen, member of the Royal Fusiliers, inte

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Support for histone code?

By | May 22, 2006

Four papers released online today detail some of the work from David Allis? group and others that?s detailed in our linkurl:recent article;http://www.the-scientist.com/2006/5/1/34/1/ on chromatin remodeling. In two __Nature__ papers released today, Allis, a Rockefeller chromatin researcher, along with postdocs Joanna Wysocka and Tomek Swigut and a team led by structural biologist Dinshaw Patel, from Memorial Sloan Kettering, report on BPTF, the largest subunit of the nucleosome remodeling facto

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Proteins in vivo often function in complexes, and indeed, that?s how many individual structural biology efforts approach them. Not structural genomics efforts, though: For all their high-throughput methods, structural genomics pipelines typically treat proteins individually, in isolation. A linkurl:paper;http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/abstract/0602606103v1 released May 11 in __PNAS__ could help bridge this gap. The new method, developed by linkurl:David Eisenberg;http://www.doe-mbi.ucla.edu/P

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The FDA's identity crisis

By | May 17, 2006

On its hundredth birthday, the Food and Drug Administration is having a bit of an identity crisis. The FDA has long been conflicted as to whether it is primarily a regulatory or a scientific entity, said Peter Barton Hutt, former chief counsel for the administration, at yesterday?s FDA Centennial Conference in Philadelphia. In fact, it was the subject of what Hutt called "one of the funniest congressional debates I?ve sat through" during his FDA tenure in the 1970s. Now, as various ?o

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Surprise, surprise. Sussex backs chemistry

By | May 15, 2006

Over the past few weeks, the leadership of the University of Sussex, in England, has faced a barrage of criticism from scientists, media and linkurl:politicians;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/23404/ over plans to linkurl:reshape its chemistry department;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/23404/ in favor of biological chemistry. The planned restructuring, widely seen as the brainchild of vice chancellor Alasdair Smith, was denigrated by a Nobel Laureate, protested against by st

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Hwang charged with fraud, embezzlement

By | May 12, 2006

Hwang Woo-suk, the South Korean researcher who admitted fabricating data on human stem cell lines, has been charged with criminal fraud and embezzlement, and now potentially faces years in jail, prosecutors announced Friday (May 12). In a linkurl:statement;http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060512/sc_nm/korea_science_dc;_ylt=AoWnlxWJZt1f3kSQ6kx3JgoPLBIF;_ylu=X3oDMTA5aHJvMDdwBHNlYwN5bmNhdA-- provided to Reuters, prosecutor Lee In-kyu accused Hwang of being the lead actor in an elaborate plot to fabric

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Histones are everywhere

By | May 11, 2006

Just the other day I was talking to a researcher on the phone whose work had unexpectedly intersected with nucleosome remodeling. I get the feeling it?s not an uncommon occurrence. I?ve enjoyed following the linkurl:explosion of research;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/23392/ on this topic in the past decade, in part because the analogies are irresistible. As the now pat intro to numerous papers on the subject says, with the sequence of the human genome at hand, scientists are lo

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A word about BioMedCentral

By | May 1, 2006

Some of you may be wondering why The Scientist is today publishing a linkurl:news story;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/23352/ that on the face of it seems quite critical of BioMedCentral, our sister company. It's a fair question, and one with a simple answer: We are commited to covering significant developments, in science publishing and elsewhere, that are likely to be of interest to our readers, irrespective of the source of the story. This particular article is a test of the edit

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