News

Biotech Startups' Business And Science Missions Must Be Crystal Clear From Day One, Experts Say
Biotech Startups' Business And Science Missions Must Be Crystal Clear From Day One, Experts Say
Smarter consumership and rigid demands from investors leave little room for fuzzy thinking in entrepreneurial plans Despite recent setbacks in drug approvals, the mounting campaign for cost-cutting in the health care industry, and ongoing tribulations in the United States and global financial markets, the domestic biotechnology startup world is apparently holding its own. As the industry at large matures, analysts say, new entrants are learning from the highly publicized mistakes of their pr
NIH's Healy: Although Her Impact Has Been Powerful, Questions Remain About Her Long-Term Influence
NIH's Healy: Although Her Impact Has Been Powerful, Questions Remain About Her Long-Term Influence
Praise for some of her achievements is tempered by ongoing concern over future NIH strategies What will be the long-term impact of Bernadine Healy's brief two years as the first woman director of the National Institutes of Health? With her recently announced resignation, effective June 30, the fate of projects and issues she has pressed for or influenced becomes less clear. Among these are her creation of a women's health office at the institutes, her development of a strategic plan for NIH re
Environmental Science Job Prospects Healthier Than In Other Disciplines
Environmental Science Job Prospects Healthier Than In Other Disciplines
Growing awareness of environmental challenges keeps employment outlook relatively bright in this diverse research area According to experts in this professional market, there is reason for optimism based on a combination of factors--mostly a heightened public concern about environmental threats along with stepped-up vigilance by environment-monitoring governmental agencies. Robert Baillod, professor and head of the department of civil and environmental engineering at Michigan Technological Un
At FDA: A Study In Staying Power
At FDA: A Study In Staying Power
The ability of David Kessler, the 41-year-old commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, to survive the purge of Bush appointees by the Clinton administration is an achievement being greeted with praise by some in the pharmaceutical, food, and biotechnology industries; and measured disappointment by some manufacturers of medical devices. Kessler was asked to retain his position by the Clinton administration in February. He took the reins of the agency in December 1990, and at that tim
Sources Indicate A U.S. Return To UNESCO Is Likely
Sources Indicate A U.S. Return To UNESCO Is Likely
A recently proposed congressional resolution and statements by President Clinton are giving some scientists and diplomats the feeling that the United States will soon return to UNESCO after a decade of absence. If so, the group would once again be allowed to hire Americans for scientific, teaching, and administrative positions. UNESCO--the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization--was abandoned by the Reagan administration in December 1983 for what were seen as large
SOME QUESTION UNESCO'S SCIENCE
SOME QUESTION UNESCO'S SCIENCE
SOME QUESTION UNESCO'S SCIENCE Author: Ron Kaufman Though some of those familiar with the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) eagerly support a return to the organization by the United States and Great Britain, others say such a move would have no scientific merit. "By going back we'd only get good will--maybe," says Gregory Newell, the assistant secretary of state for U.S. multilateral policy from 1982 to 1985 and the architect of the U.S

Notebook

Notebook
Notebook
Patently Special To Russia With A Rebuke More Messages For Coloradans New Molecule On The Block Stairway To The Stars Skin Care Two Merck & Co. Inc. researchers have been named cowinners of the Inventor of the Year award, given by Intellectual Property Owners, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit association that represents owners of patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. Gary H. Rasmusson and Glenn F. Reynolds will share the $5,000 award, presented at an April 15 ceremony in Wa

Opinion

On Shafarevich And NAS: Tolerance Vs. Indifference
On Shafarevich And NAS: Tolerance Vs. Indifference
Editor's Note: Last July, National Academy of Sciences president Frank Press and foreign secretary James Wyngaarden sent an unprecedented letter to Russian mathematician Igor R. Shafarevich, head of the V.A. Steklov Institute in Moscow, suggesting that he resign his membership as a foreign associate of NAS because of "anti-Semitic writings" contained in Russophobia, a book by Shafarevich. The letter further alleged that Shafarevich "used [his] position to interfere with the careers" of young Je

Letter

Undergraduate Research
Undergraduate Research
Laura Mays Hoopes's commentary (The Scientist, Feb. 22, 1993, page 10) sets the stage for listing several advantages of the "practicum" or "special problem" in the undergraduate curriculum. A research problem allows for observation of experimental materials over time; too often, students graduate perceiving research as a series of studies designed, carried out, and interpreted during two-hour lab periods. A well-designed practicum can provide an opportunity for the student to integrate inform
AMS Condemns Russophobia
AMS Condemns Russophobia
The article by Barbara Spector in the Sept. 28, 1992, issue of The Scientist [page 1] reported on actions taken by the National Academy of Sciences with regard to one of its foreign associates, the eminent Russian mathematician Igor R. Shafarevich. In brief, Shafarevich had written a book, Russophobia, which many readers interpreted as a thinly veiled anti-Semitic diatribe. NAS president Frank Press, speaking on behalf of NAS, had protested Shafarevich's words of hatred and had written a letter
Cryptozoology
Cryptozoology
Paul McCarthy's story about cryptozoologists (The Scientist, Jan. 11, 1993, page 1) left me wondering why these researchers are so scorned by other scientists and by funding agencies when evolutionary biologists engage in the same activity. McCarthy noted that French zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans coined the term "cryptozoology" to describe the study of unverified animals. Of course, that's what evolutionists do when they speculate about undiscovered transitional fauna in the fossil record. Rec

Commentary

Citation Searches Can Be Powerful Tools In Combating Redundant Publication
Citation Searches Can Be Powerful Tools In Combating Redundant Publication
Recently in The Scientist ("Vigilant Science Journal Editors Fight Redundancy," March 8, 1993, page 1), writer Paul McCarthy focused on a widespread and apparently growing concern among publishing professionals: the attempt by some scientists, as McCarthy put it, to "add heft to their c.v.'s" by getting two or more articles into print that are based on a single research finding. He made the point that today's highly competitive job market has exacerbated the ongoing duplicate publishing problem

Research

Science Research In 1992: What Fields Were The Hottest Of The Hot?
Science Research In 1992: What Fields Were The Hottest Of The Hot?
RANK PAPER CITATIONS 1 M. Leid, et al., "Purification, cloning, and RXR identity of the HeLa cell factor with which RAR or TR heterodimerizes to bind target sequences efficiently," Cell, 68(2): 377- 95, 24 January 1992. 58 2 J.D. Brook, et al., "Molecular basis of myotonic dystrophy; Expansion of a trinucleotide (CTG) repeat at the 3 end of a transcript encoding a protein kinase family member," Cell, 68(4):799-808, 20 February 1992. 47 3 W.O. Spitzer, et al., "The use of beta-agonists an
Hot Papers
Hot Papers
1992'S HOTTEST RESEARCH PAPERS RANK PAPER CITATIONS 1 M. Leid, et al., "Purification, cloning, and RXR identity of the HeLa cell factor with which RAR or TR heterodimerizes to bind target sequences efficiently," Cell, 68(2): 377- 95, 24 January 1992. 58 2 J.D. Brook, et al., "Molecular basis of myotonic dystrophy; Expansion of a trinucleotide (CTG) repeat at the 3 end of a transcript encoding a protein kinase family member," Cell, 68(4):799-808, 20 February 1992. 47 3 W.O. S

Hot Paper

Cell Biology
Cell Biology
A.C. Rapraeger, A. Krufka, B.B. Olwin, "Requirement of heparan sulfate for bFGF-mediated fibroblast growth and myoblast differentiation," Science, 252:1705, 1991. Alan Rapraeger (University of Wisconsin, Madison): "The gratifying aspect of this work has been its appeal to a wide group of scientists, owing to its relevance to cell-matrix interactions, cell growth and differentiation, and cell signaling mechanisms. The broad appeal of the work is partly because of the blending of my interests in
Cell Biology
Cell Biology
S.A. Kliewer, L. Umesono, D.I. Mangelsdorf, R.M. Evans, "Retinoid X receptor interacts with nuclear receptors in retinoic acid, thyroid hormone, and vitamin D signalling," Nature, 355:446-9, 1992. Steven Kliewer (The Salk Institute, La Jolla, Calif.): "Vitamin D, thyroid hormone, and all-trans retinoic acid are essential cofactors in development, differentiation, and homeostasis. The effects of these endocrine signals on target gene expression are mediated through nuclear hormone receptors
Microbiology
Microbiology
F.C. Michel, S.B. Dass, E.A. Grulke, C.A. Reddy, "Role of manganese peroxidases and lignin peroxidases of Phanerochaete chrysosporium in the decolorization of kraft bleach pulp," Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 57:2368, 1991. Frederick C. Michel, Jr.: (Michigan State University, East Lansing): "Lignin, a major structural polymer of vascular plants, is second only to cellulose as the most abundant renewable organic polymer in the biosphere. Microbial removal of lignin has important bi

Technology

Cutting Hazardous Waste Disposal Costs In Lab Research
Cutting Hazardous Waste Disposal Costs In Lab Research
Few laboratory researchers would question the need for hazardous materials in certain experimental procedures. The radioactive isotope P32, for instance, is vital in DNA research, and hazardous solvents such as xylene and methylene chloride are virtual staples of organic chemistry and biochemistry. But the cost of disposing of such materials now routinely exceeds their purchase price, adding significantly to expenses in already-tight research budgets. And this cost is rising, driven largely by
HELP WITH HAZARDOUS WASTE
HELP WITH HAZARDOUS WASTE
HELP WITH HAZARDOUS WASTE Author: Caren D. Potter Scientists and lab directors say that there are many ways to cut down on hazardous waste. These include the following measures: * Substitute a safe chemical for one that is hazardous. Non- hazardous degreasers have been developed to replace xylene, for example. * If a safe alternative is not available, a less-hazardous chemical, such as toluene, can sometimes be used in place of a very hazardous one, such as benzene. * Practice mi

Profession

Do High School Science Competitions Predict Success?
Do High School Science Competitions Predict Success?
When the winners of the Westinghouse Science Talent Search were announced at an awards banquet in Washington, D.C., last month, two young women had taken the top slots in the prestigious precollege competition. Elizabeth Pine, 17, of Chicago finished first for her experiments linking two different types of fungi; Xanthi Merlo, also 17, placed second for demonstrating the role a specific protein may play in prolonging blood clotting. "After they announced the first five of the top 10, I didn't
People: Two From France To Get Wolf Prize In Mathematics
People: Two From France To Get Wolf Prize In Mathematics
Two From France To Get Wolf Prize In Mathematics Author: Ron Kaufman Two mathematics professors based in France, Mikhael Gromov of the Institut des Hautes Etudes Scientifiques (IEHS) in Bures-sur- Yvette and Jacques Tits of the Collge de France in Paris, will share the 1993 Wolf Prize in Mathematics. Since 1978, the Israeli-based Wolf Foundation has been granting four $100,000 prizes annually for individual achievements among the five fields of agriculture, chemistry, mathemat

Briefs

People Briefs: Five Researchers Receive King Faisal Prizes In Science And Medicine
People Briefs: Five Researchers Receive King Faisal Prizes In Science And Medicine
Five Researchers Receive King Faisal Prizes In Science And Medicine Two From France To Get Wolf Prize In Mathematics Herbert Walther, director of the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics in Munich, Germany, and a professor of physics at Munich University, and Steven Chu, chairman of the physics department at Stanford University, have been selected as recipients of the King Faisal International Prize for Science. Jean-Claude Chermann, director of the laboratory of retroviruses and