July 1996

News

Enhancement Companies Create Jobs, Breathe Fresh Air Into Biotech Project
Enhancement Companies Create Jobs, Breathe Fresh Air Into Biotech Project
Fresh Air Into Biotech With high-priced products and numerous regulatory roadblocks, biotech firms are having a hard time finding public and venture-capital funding, industry analysts report. To sustain themselves through years of development, trials, and marketing, these companies are adopting novel capital-preserving tactics. One such strategy is "enhancement"-inventing and marketing drug-delivery methods and other technologies that "give new life" to established drugs, as well as to generic
Scientists Struggling With Concerns Raised By Genome Project Progress
Scientists Struggling With Concerns Raised By Genome Project Progress
Genome Project Progress Some firms and institutions are establishing ethics branches to focus on policy issues left unresolved by NIH's ELSI project. RULES REQUIRED: Stanford's Paul Billings thinks ELSI has fallen short in creating a "regulatory arena". Many scientists are finding that concerns about the complex ethical, legal, and social issues surrounding genetic testing and the use of the resulting information are taking up a larger part of their time. In response to this shift in focus,
Research Parks Forming Strategies To Adapt To End Of Building-Boom
Research Parks Forming Strategies To Adapt To End Of Building-Boom
Of Building Boom Faced with decreased federal funding and corporate cuts in R&D, science complexes turn to economic development and incubation for help. 'GOOD NEWS': University Park at Southern Illinois University has seen small companies blossom. Research parks, like other facilities that house working scientists, are facing some new economic realities. Growth has slowed since the mid-1990s, government funding of research is down, and corporate tenants are looking to please Wall Street i
The Scientist - Crossword Puzzle - July 8, 1996
The Scientist - Crossword Puzzle - July 8, 1996
By Eric Albert Email: ealbert@world.std.com ACROSS 1 Sugar in honey 5 Muscle-bone link 10 Pertaining to an organism's chemical processes 11 Foreign tissue 12 Fourth most common element in the Earth's crust 13 Refer to the literature 14 Femto x 1,000 16 Region, in mathematics 21 Milk disaccharidase 23 Extrachromosomal bacterial DNA 25 British magnate who founded a scholarship 26 Substance obtained from red algae 27 Donee 31 17 Down of 1 g of fat liberates about 9.5 of them 32 Place in one's hea

Opinion

Quality Judgments, Cost Concerns Must Be Separated In Peer Review
Quality Judgments, Cost Concerns Must Be Separated In Peer Review
Peer Review Few discussions arouse as much emotion in the scientific community as the controversy over peer review. As the number of unfunded grants started to rise in the early 1990s, so did complaints about unfair criticisms by reviewers. Many whose applications were unsuccessful claimed that the decisions often were based on reviewers' comments that were inaccurate, irrelevant, or glibly disparaging. While critics of the peer-review system called for reform, its defenders countered that th

Commentary

Inclusion Of Women Does Not Mean Exclusion Of Men
Inclusion Of Women Does Not Mean Exclusion Of Men
Of Men The impetus for this commentary came in the way of a thank-you note from a male science leader to whom I recently sent a complimentary membership in the Association for Women in Science (AWIS). As part of its 25th-anniversary celebration, which is taking place this year, AWIS offered memberships to several leaders in science and technology who continually demonstrate a strong commitment to gender equity. From the note I could see that my colleague was pleasantly surprised; it never occu

Leaders of Science

Roy Silverstein
Roy Silverstein
The Scientist THE SCIENTIST® The Newspaper for the Life Sciences Professional "Reading THE SCIENTIST gives me rapid insight into fast-breaking developments in all areas of science while keeping me abreast of important national political and economic trends critically important to the future of clinical research." ROY SILVERSTEIN, past president, American Federation for Clinical Research, Thorofare, N.J.; professor of medicine, Cornell University Medical College, New York As head of the

Letter

Self- And Single-Subject Experiments
Self- And Single-Subject Experiments
Michal Jasienski [The Scientist, March 4, 1996, page 10] wrote that self-experimentation and single-subject studies "represent a seriously flawed scientific methodology. Consequently, the results of all single-subject studies are bound to be erroneous." Quite a sweeping statement! Three momentous studies that disprove Jasienski's assertion come to mind: In the early 19th century, Italian physicist Alessandro Volta realized that existing electrometers were inadequate to measure currents generat
Ethical Theories
Ethical Theories
Due to an editing error, this is an erroneous version of the letter. The corrected version can be found in the September 2, 1996 issue of The Scientist In his May 13, 1996, letter to The Scientist (page 12), Arthur W. Galston still appears somewhat confused about what ethical theories can teach us. As I stated in my previous letter: moral practices are not theories (B. Everill, The Scientist, April 1, 1996, page 13). They are accounts of nothing more than themselves. I agree with Galston's st

Research

Researchers Finding Rewarding Careers As Software Entrepreneurs
Researchers Finding Rewarding Careers As Software Entrepreneurs
Bacterium SIZE MATTERS: Deer ticks -- vectors of Borrelia Burgdorferi -- are half the size of the common dog tick, which is not associated with Lyme disease. As a new generation of adolescent deer tick enjoys its first blood meal, scientists in the United States and abroad continue to focus their research efforts on understanding and preventing Lyme disease. Ticks infected with the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi cause more than 10,000 cases of Lyme disease in the U.S. each year, according to

Hot Paper

Human Genome Mapping
Human Genome Mapping
Edited by Karen Young Kreeger K.H. Buetow, J.L. Weber, S. Ludwigsen, T. Scherpbier-Heddema, G.M. Duyk, V.C. Sheffield, Z. Wang, J.C. Murray, "Integrated human genome-wide maps constructed using the CEPH reference panel," Nature Genetics, 6:391-3, 1994. (Cited in more than 140 publications as of June 1996) Comments by Kenneth H. Buetow, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia USER-FRIENDLY: Maps of human genetic markers integrate the work of many labs, according to Fox Chase's Kenneth Buetow.
Combinatorial Chemistry
Combinatorial Chemistry
MIX AND MATCH: Many useful compounds can be derived from combinatorial libraries, says Affymax's Mark Gallop. M.A. Gallop, R.W. Barrett, W.J. Dower, S.P.A. Fodor, E.M. Gordon, "Applications of combinatorial technologies to drug discovery. 1. Background and peptide combinatorial libraries" Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 37: 1233-51, 1994 (Cited in more than 130 publications as of June 1996) E.M. Gordon, R.W. Barrett, W.J. Dower, S.P.A. Fodor, M.A. Gallop, "Applications of combinatorial techn

Profession

Researchers Finding Rewarding Careers As Software Entrepreneurs
Researchers Finding Rewarding Careers As Software Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurs When Steve Sands was studying for his Ph.D. in neuroscience in the late 1970s, he planned to write his doctoral thesis on experiments matching brain function with behavior. However, a lack of good software or computerized methods for correlating brain activity with behavior eventually forced Sands to drop his idea. "I ended up doing a thesis on animal behavior [alone] rather than the neuroscience project I really wanted to do," he recalls. Like many scientists who are frustrated

Technology

Bibliographic Software Adding New Features, Becoming Web Savvy
Bibliographic Software Adding New Features, Becoming Web Savvy
Web Savvy Hard times for science are turning out to be good times for publishers of personal bibliographic software. As scientists feel increasing pressure to apply for grants from several agencies and submit articles to multiple journals, the value of bibliographic software rises. These programs, which store detailed reference information and export them in a wide variety of formats, are ubiquitous in scientific offices and laboratories (F. Hoke, The Scientist, Jan. 11, 1993, page 18; June 27,

Notebook

Notebook
Notebook
On June 14, a House Appropriations subcommittee gave some researchers cause for celebration when it surprisingly voted to remove a provision in a government spending bill that extended a ban on federal funding of human embryo research. However, their glee was short-lived. The full panel turned around on June 25 and adopted an amendment to continue the research ban. John Eppig, senior staff scientist at Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, doubts that the ban will be overturned anytime soon,