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UC Looks for Payoffs from Weapons Labs
UC Looks for Payoffs from Weapons Labs
LIVERMORE, CALIF.—The University of California will continue to run the nation’s two federal laboratories for designing nuclear weapons, with a new five-year contract that nearly doubles its management fee. Officials said that much of the extra money will be spent on commercializing research from the federal labs. The regents voted 17-3, with one abstention, to maintain the university’s ties to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, Calif., and the Los Ala
Fear of Suits Blocks Retractions
Fear of Suits Blocks Retractions
WASHINGTON—The fear of lawsuits is blocking efforts to purge the scientific literature of articles by psychologist Stephen Breuning that are based on fraudulent data. The National Institute of Mental Health concluded this spring that Breuning “knowingly, willfully and repeatedly engaged in misleading and deceptive practices in reporting results of research.” Although all journal editors who published Breuning’s questionable papers were sent copies of the NIMH report, on
Tax Law Shrinks Stipends
Tax Law Shrinks Stipends
WASHINGTON—Thanks to the new tax law, many U.S. graduate students this year will owe taxes on their fellowships and stipends for the first time. And some will see their financial aid shrink accordingly. “There’s a lot of dissatisfaction, dissension and anger” among affected students about the new tax regulations, said Patrick Melia, assistant dean of the graduate school at Georgetown University here. “It’s created a lot of unneeded frustration.” U
Defense Labs Yield Ideas For U.K. Firms
Defense Labs Yield Ideas For U.K. Firms
LONDON—Britain is using “ferrets” to transfer technology from its national defense research laboratories into the civil sector. These two-legged ferrets, all of whom have good technical qualifications, are employed by a technology broker to spot promising ideas and obtain licenses for them. The broker is a private company called Defence Technology Enterprises based at Milton Keynes. Owned by eight British financial institutions, it so far has signed up more than 200 associa
A story in the July 27 issue focused on the Army Laboratory Command facilities.
A story in the July 27 issue focused on the Army Laboratory Command facilities.
WASHINGTON—A large black bust of Thomas Edison greets visitors to the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) here. Established in 1923 at the famous inventor’s urging, the lab was for more than 20 years the federal govemment’s sole facility for fundamental research in the physical sciences. NRL remains the Pentagon’s flagship research facility, conducting work in such fields as space, new materials, microelectronics and artificial intelligence. Some 700 of its 1,600 scienti
TIAA Report Asks Choice
TIAA Report Asks Choice
WASHINGTON—A draft report on the nation’s largest teachers’ pension system recommends a variety of new investment choices for its policyholders—but still may not silence its swelling chorus of critics. The report by a special trustee committee of the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association-College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF) calls for adding six pension funds to the $63 billion system. More than 1 million policyholders have joined the system in plans offere
TIAA Report Asks Choice
TIAA Report Asks Choice
WASHINGTON—A draft report on the nation’s largest teachers’ pension system recommends a variety of new investment choices for its policyholders—but still may not silence its swelling chorus of critics. The report by a special trustee committee of the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association-College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF) calls for adding six pension funds to the $63 billion system. More than 1 million policyholders have joined the system in plans offere
Iowa Ties Rebound to Biotech Express
Iowa Ties Rebound to Biotech Express
AMES, IOWA—The idea that biotechnology can help pull Iowa out of its worst economic crisis in 50 years has won converts in state government and stimulated the interest of companies worldwide. But the millions of dollars flowing into Iowa universities have not altered the view of scientists here that basic research cannot produce a short-term economic bonanza. Throughout the country, states are scrambling to amass expertise in biotechnology and related fields. An array of centers of exce
HHMI Spends $30 Million On Undergrads
HHMI Spends $30 Million On Undergrads
WASHINGTON—Taking its cue from recent studies that point to a funding gap in science education at liberal arts colleges, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) has begun a program to upgrade science curricula at selected undergraduate institutions. HHMI has invited 76 liberal arts colleges not affiliated with any Ph.D.-granting university and 18 historically black colleges to compete for the grants, which will range from $500,000 to $2 million. The winners will be announced next sp
Joint Centers to Seek Outside Funds
Joint Centers to Seek Outside Funds
Narjes said he expected the laboratories now funded almost entirely by the EEC, to make up for lost income through contract research with private companies and national governmental agencies. He said the combined staffs should remain near their present size of 2,260 scientists. The centers will cost the EEC about $115 million in each of the next four years, with three-fourths of the budget devoted to Ispra. Established in the 1950s, Ispra has concentrated on solar energy, nudear safety and reac
BRITE Projects to Aid Industries
BRITE Projects to Aid Industries
BRUSSELS—The European Commission has approved the next round of projects under the BRITE (Basic Research in Industrial Technologies for Europe) program. Some 112 projects will receive 105 million ECU ($120 million) for work in such fields as laser welding, corrosion-resistant alloys for turbines and robot-controlled knitting plants. About 45 percent of the money will be released immediately to a collection of large and small industrial companies, research institutes and universities in
58 Projects For Eureka
58 Projects For Eureka
MADRID—Ministers from 19 European countries have agreed to fund 58 new projects as part of the ongoing Eureka program in advanced technologies. The latest grants, worth a total of 709 million ECU ($800 million), bring to 165 the number of research projects approved since the program was begun in 1985. Meeting here last month, the science ministers also agreed on the possibility of participation by countries from Eastern Europe and North America. The list of participants has grown beyon
D Projects Unblocked
D Projects Unblocked
DUBLIN—The European Commission is expected to agree later this fall to divert at least $462 million over the next five years from the EEC’s Regional Fund into helping the science infrastructure of its less favored regions. The proposal is based on work done for the EEC by Ireland’s science agency, the National Board for Science and Technology. The NBST was hired in 1985 to determine how Regional Fund monies— traditionally used for road, sewer and drainage projects&#
Swedes, Cal Biotech Start Firm
Swedes, Cal Biotech Start Firm
Karo Bio will focus on infectious disease, steroids and bone regeneration drugs. The research, conducted by a staff that is expected to reach more than 100 scientists by late 1989, will be carried out at the Huddings Hospital near here. In addition to having exclusive European licensing rights to products it develops, the new company will gain European rights to the nasal drug delivery system evolved by California Biotech that is undergoing clinical trials for use with substances such as insul
Nine Nations Agree to Build Synchrotron
Nine Nations Agree to Build Synchrotron
LONDON—Europe has decided to remain at the forefront of condensed matter research with an agreement by nine countries to start building the $500 million European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) next year in Grenoble, France. At the same time, the United Kingdom has bolstered its reputation for remaining out of step with the rest of European science by refusing to pledge its support for the ESRF at a key meeting last month. Although the British Science and Engineering Research Cou
Institute Tackles Minority Concerns
Institute Tackles Minority Concerns
WASHINGTON—Organizers of a new effort to carve out a larger role for minorities in science and technology, faced with a shortage of people in the various disciplines, believe the solution lies in part with making better use of the minority scientists that do exist. “The money is secondary at this point,” explained Melvin Thompson, director of the Institute on Science, Space and Technology to be housed at Howard University. “We’ll attract the resources we need by
Congress Asked To Amend Act on Orphan Drugs
Congress Asked To Amend Act on Orphan Drugs
WASHINGTON—The Orphan Drug Act, passed in 1983, has been effective in bringing to market new drugs tsrgeted at rare diseases, but more research funds are needed to complete the task and expand it to cover medical foods and devices, federal lawmakers were told this month. In testimony before a House subcommittee on health and the environment, Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Frank Young reported that nearly 160 drugs have been designated as orphans, of which 18 have been approv
Apartheid Splits Session On Archeology
Apartheid Splits Session On Archeology
MAINZ, WEST GERMANY—An international scientific society is once again embroiled in a debate on apartheid in the form of a proposal to change its constitution to permit the exclusion from meetings of scientists from South Africa and Namibia. The 11th Congress of the International Union of Prehistoric and Protohistoric Sciences (IUPPS) met here in August amid protesters who demanded that the organization exclude scientists who work in countries that practice apartheid. The lines of the
Ethiopia to Form Science Center
Ethiopia to Form Science Center
ADDIS ABABA—Ethtiopia’s military government is moving rapidly to create a National Science Center to force the pace of technical change in one of the world’s poorest countries. The center is an outgrowth of the increased support for science expressed in the country’s new constitution, approved in May and put into effect last month. The idea for a center comes largely from Abebe Muluneh a civil engineer in his late 40s who heads the country’s Science and Technolog
Buck Trust to Finance Aging Center
Buck Trust to Finance Aging Center
SAN FRANCISCO—A California court has awarded a $65 million en- dowment from the Buck Trust to begin a multidisciplinary research institute on aging. The Buck Center on Aging, to be built in Main County, will be affiliated with the Berkeley, San Francisco and Davis campuses of the University of California system. The center expects to open in 1992 with a research staff of 60, including 15 senior researchers, and an annual operating budget of $4.5 million. The staff is expected to grow to
NEJM Raps Researchers For Publishing Twice
NEJM Raps Researchers For Publishing Twice
SAN FRANCISCO—What constitutes duplicate publication of scientific material? And what should happen to researchers who cross that line? The September 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine featured letters from readers who complained that an article on postmenopausal bone loss in the January 22 issue of NEJM was remarkably similar to an article by the same authors in the January issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. The authors replied that the pa- per
Barriers to Technology Transfer Don't Work
Barriers to Technology Transfer Don't Work
Q: The U.S. government is concerned about high technology links with the Eastern bloc. Does that concern you? SEIBOLD: I am a scientist, and this is a European science foundation. It doesn’t matter to me, if a man is a good geologist, whether he is a communist or a Jesuit. If he cooperates and brings good ideas and is a good scientist, fine. Q: But isn’t science becoming more closely linked with technology? Isn’t it becoming more difficult to draw a sharp line between what
An Evening Visit to the Sakharovs
An Evening Visit to the Sakharovs
If someone had told me last December that I would meet Andrel Sakharov six months later in Moscow, I—a notorious optimist—would have considered that person a fool. But in June, after unsuccessfully trying to call Sakharov shortly after my arrival in Moscow en route to a conference in Novosibirsk, I asked a friend to drive me to 48B Chkalov Street at around 9 p.m. I rang at the shabby door, which was opened by Yelena Bonner, Sakharov’s wife. She is used to late visitors, to
ESF's Seibold On Forging Links For European Science
ESF's Seibold On Forging Links For European Science
When Eugene Seibold —German marine geologist, doyen of European science policy and president of the European Science Foundation (ESF)—f aces the problems of organizing international collaboration on the linguistically and culturally divided European continent, he says he is a realist. In Europe, where it’s unheard of for a French academic, for example, to be given a professorship in a German university, any real integration is unlikely “for another 200 years.” Seib
Minimizing Biohazards in Animal Research
Minimizing Biohazards in Animal Research
Working with laboratory animals carries several risks. Apart from the obvious physical hazards of bites and scratches, animal research often involves biological hazards that exist because animals can serve as natural reservoirs for infectious diseases (including zoonoses), hosts in studies of pathogenic microorganisms, and sources of allergens. These hazards can affect not only laboratory personnel, but also other laboratory animals, including valuable breeding stocks. Infectious diseases that
The Search for 'Fitness' in Nature
The Search for 'Fitness' in Nature
Biophysicist Harold Morowitz spent his last sabbatical pondering the cosmic mysteries aboard a yacht anchored off the West Maui mountains in Hawaii. The result of his musings can be found in Cosmic Joy and Local Pain: Musings of a Mystic Scientist (Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1987). [For a review of the book, see THE SCIENTIST, September 21, 1987, p. 20]. The first possession he packed for his trip was Lawrence Henderson’s book The Fitness of the Environment. In this excerpt, Morowitz

Commentary

The Year Past, the Years Ahead
The Year Past, the Years Ahead
When launching THE SCIENTIST one year ago, we promised readers a unique publication—the first newspaper for science professionals. We said it would be filled with useful information that scientists and policy-makers could apply in their daily work. We promised news and features found nowhere else. What’s more, we promised an attractive newspaper with arresting color illustrations, an accessible tabloid format, and concise, crisply written stories that respected the time of busy re

Letter

Letters
Letters
I thank Michael Sokal for his warm praise of my book The Launching of Modern American Science, 1846-1876 (August 10, 1987, p. 25). I should like, however, to answer one mild criticism. Sokal feels that in alluding to certain scientific doings I should have described and discussed them in greater detail. In response I quote from my opening chapter: “Measured against what Europeans were doing in those years, lAmerican scientific] output was modest. The emphasis of this book will be on the

Opinion

Strobel: 'I Have Acted in Good Faith'
Strobel: 'I Have Acted in Good Faith'
GARY STROBEL Dutch elm disease. . . is known throughout North America and Europe as one of the most destructive killers of American elm trees. It has been estimated that over half the recreational elms in the U.S.A., numbering in the millions, have been destroyed by this pathogen.... The bacteria which was injected into the 14 elm trees was not genetically engineered. By definition, the NIH guidelines for recombinantDNAresearch do not apply.. . I had called.... . the USDA, [which] informed me
Forget Affirmative Action. Think National Survival
Forget Affirmative Action. Think National Survival
American women have made remarkable inroads into the community of scientists, particularly over the past decade and a half, but the increase in their participation has stopped well short of equality with men either in numbers or in opportunities. Although the problems women continue to encounter are formidable, the nation’s need for them is growing, and change in their status appears inevitable. With rare exceptions, American women are relative latecomers to science. Their representatio
Someone's Blowing Smoke In My Eyes
Someone's Blowing Smoke In My Eyes
There is cheering news from Washington, D.C., for inveterate bedtime smokers. Scientists at the National Bureau of Standards have announced that it is possible to produce cigarettes that are less likely to set the mattress on fire should they tumble from the lips of smokers succumbing to the lures of Morpheus. Moreover, the scientists say, these modem marvels will contain no more tar or nicotine than do low-tech cigarettes! (Cigarette ad, 1988: “Same great taste; won’t lay the hou
What's the Sporting Use of Science?
What's the Sporting Use of Science?
One of the most highly motivated scientists I have observed over the years has devoted much of his career to testing athletes for illicit drugs. He is an energetic man, a resourceful technician and a person clearly inspired by the goal of achieving total fairness in the gladiatorial arena. He argues forcefully for the proposition that international sporting competitions (indeed, any sporting competition) should be free of artificial chemical crutches. His ideal is the Olympic ideal—the n
Korean Science Opens Its Doors
Korean Science Opens Its Doors
It has not escaped even the most casual observer that things in South Korea are booming. As H.G. Wells said of Britain in the Industrial Revolution, “Queen Victoria was like a great paperweight that for half a century sat upon men’s minds, and when she was removed their ideas began to blow about all over the place haphazardly.” During the Japanese occupation (1895-1945) and the strict anti-communist regimes since then, ideas in Korea have been strictly controlled and the coun

New Products

Simple, But Not Quite Complete
Simple, But Not Quite Complete
VOLKS WRITER SCIENTIFIC Lifetree Software Inc. 411 Pacific Street Monterey, CA 93940 (800) 543-3873 (800) 831-8733 (in Callibmia) Price: $495 Requirements: 256K RAM, DOS 2.0 or later, IBM color graphics card or equivalent (will not work with EGA) Perhaps the greatest advantage of Volkswriter Scientific is its simplicity. Simple menus guide you through edit sessions with ease. “What you see is what you get” (WYSIWYG) graphics capabilities facilitate its use. Despite these plusses,
Powerful Plus to a Word Processor
Powerful Plus to a Word Processor
EXACT Technical Support Software Inc. 72 Kent Street Brookline, MA 02146 (617) 734-4130 Price: $475 Requirements:128K RAM, DOS 2.0 or later, color or monochrome graphics board Exact is better described as a text formatting language program than a word processor. In fact, it is intended to be used to augment your favorite word processing software to provide enhanced mathematical and scientific formatting capabilities. Exact does not have menus or editing functions, and its “what you s
Well-Suited for Technical Documents
Well-Suited for Technical Documents
MANUSCRIPT Lotus Development Corp. 55 Cambridge Parkway Cambridge, MA 02142 (617) 577-8500 Price: $495 Requirements: 512K RAM, hard disk, DOS 2.0 or later Manuscript is a technical word processor capable of handling anything from a short memo to an entire book. Although it lacks “what you see is what you get” (WYSIWYG) capabilities, it is full of features that let you combine graphics and text on the same page easily, import data from 1-2-3 and Symphony and format com plex scient

Books etc.

The Tipped Scales Of High Technology
The Tipped Scales Of High Technology
A HIGH TECHNOLOGY GAP? Europe, America and Japan. Andrew J. Pierre, ed. New York, University Press, New York, 1987. 114 pp. $20.50. This short book, the sixth in a series on relations between Western Europe and the United States published by the Council on Foreign Relations, is an excellent collection of papers by four influential men: Frank Press, president of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences; Hubert Curien, professor on the Faculté des Sciences at the University of Paris; Carlo D
Detecting Radar's Development
Detecting Radar's Development
RADAR IN WORLD WAR II Vol. I and II Henry E. Guerlac. Tomash/American Institute of Physics, New York, 1987.1,255 pp. $110. The American Institute of Physics and Tomash Publishers have performed a great service by publishing, after 40 years, Henry Guerlac’s outstanding history of the development of microwave radar in World War II. Until now, this unique document has been available only on the shelves of a few libraries as a collection of loose pages. Its intended publication after the war
PBS Series: Often Brilliant, Sometimes Blurry
PBS Series: Often Brilliant, Sometimes Blurry
THE RING OF TRUTH With Philip Morrison. Six-part weekly television series premiering October 20, 1987 on Public Broadcasting Service stations. Produced by Public Broadcasting Associates. A major government researcher once complained that his bosses used his scientific findings the way a drunk uses a lamppost: for support rather than illumination. The new PBS science series, The Ring of Truth, prepared as “an inside look at how science knows what it knows,” similarly seems to be us
Forthcoming Books
Forthcoming Books
Darkness at Night: A Riddle of the Universe. Edward Harrison. Harvard University Press: October 30, 264 pp, $25. Explores the phenomenon of darkness in the night sky by tracing answers and theories that in the past have proven wrong, looking at the structure and age of the universe, and examining the nature of light. BIOCHEMISTRY General Principles of BIochemistry of the Elements. Volume 7. Eilchiro Ochiai. Plenum Publishing: October, 450 pp, $79.50. Discusses global aspects of the biochemis

So They Say

So They Say
So They Say
A Dialogue Grows Up One underlying trend I have seen is a slow but steady integration of science and technology into the mainstream of national policy. This has occurred much more slowly than most scientists would have hoped, especially in the light of the rhetoric of the early sixties. Yet the dialogue between the public and the scientific community has become considerably more mature and sophisticated on both sides. Even while criticizing some of the activity and results of science, politic

Happenings

Happenings
Happenings
PEOPLE The Federation of American Scientists chose six new council members this summer: Julius Axelrod, Nobel laureate, National Institute of Mental Health; Deborah Bleviss, executive director, International Institute for Energy Conservation; Dudley R. Herschbach, Nobel laureate, professor of science, Harvard University; Art Hobson, professor of physics, University of Arkansas; Stephen H. Schneider, deputy director, National Center for Atmospheric Research Advanced Study Program and Robert A.

Profession

2nd Career Scientists and Engineers
2nd Career Scientists and Engineers
At a time when the nation is alarmed over the shortage of qualified science and mathematics teachers in public schools, the National Executive Service Corps (NESO) has discovered an untapped reserve: an ever-abundant supply of technical professionals nearing retirement who have expressed willingness to teach. Thousands of scientific and technically trained professionals annually reach retirement age, but it was not known to what extent they would be interested in teaching as a second career.
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