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December 3, 2008

05:48
Dyson spheres and Fermi paradox at Lubo Motl's reference frame

Let me postpone the serious part of this posting. ;-)As you know, we are surrounded by extraterrestrial aliens. The Drake equation proves that the intelligent life must arise almost everywhere. However, we haven't seen any extraterrestrial friends yet. The

No Dyson Spheres Found Yet at Cosmic Variance : In 1960, Freeman Dyson proposed an audacious form that future technology might take: the Dyson Sphere. It’s a simple idea, once you stop thinking in terms of “I wonder how that could be done?” and start thinking along the lines of “I

05:32
Roche Stalling for Time and Money in Genentech Deal at SeekingAlpha Biotech Stocks

Roche’s blockbuster bid for the portion of Genentech it doesn’t own has stalled amid the credit crisis and stock market plunge, and concern persists over the impact of the proposed transaction on the biotech pioneer’s culture and productivity.

Roche Stalls For Time at In the Pipeline : Remember back earlier this year, when the temperatures were high, the Dow was at 11,000, and Roche announced that they wanted to buy the rest of Genentech. So hows that working out?Not all that well, as far as can be told from the outside. This would take around

Genentech Carries On, as Roche Deal Simmers on Back Burner at WSJ.com: Health Blog : Roche’s blockbuster bid for the portion of Genentech it doesn’t own has stalled amid the credit crisis and stock market plunge, and concern persists over the impact of the proposed transaction on the biotech pioneer’s culture and productivity.

05:17
Stem Cell Recommendations for the New Administration at Science Progress

Rick Weiss outlines a framework for a new federal policy that supports funding human embryonic stem cell research over on the CAP website. He writes that within the first week of taking office, President Obama "should call upon the Department of Health and

Stem Cells and the Politics of the Ethics of the Few at Mike the Mad Biologist : Over at What's New in Life Science, I have a post about embryonic stem cell research. Stop by and make Our Benevolent Seed Overlords happy.Read the comments on this post...

04:55
The Science Unveiling at The Intersection

How and when will the Obama transition team announce the president's science adviser? And will the rollout be given the prominence it deserves?These are questions I address in my latest Science Progress column. You can read the full piece here.Read the comments

The Science Unveiling at Science Progress : Its critical that we see the science adviser rollout given a degree of prominence similar to other top-level nominations. In our next government, science cant just be an afterthought.

04:08
Colbert and Buttars at Pharyngula

The war on Christmas is heating up. Look: here's Colbert mocking atheists. He sneers at our atheist Christmas cards, and even laughs at our letters to our families..cc_box a:hover .cc_home{background:url('http://www.comedycentral.com/comedycentral/video/assets/syndicated-logo-over.png')

Gun Safety Notes at Uncertain Principles : The Daily Show nails the lessons of the Plaxico Burress fiasco: .cc_box a:hover .cc_home{background:url('http://www.comedycentral.com/comedycentral/video/assets/syndicated-logo-over.png') !important;}.cc_links a{color:#b9b9b9;text-decoration:none;}.cc_show

03:56
Best Science Books 2008: The New York Times at Confessions of a Science Librarian

This year's list of notable books is a very slightly better than last year's total of just 3. Stretching my definition of science book gives us five this year.Blood Matters: From Inherited Illness to Designer Babies, How the World and I Found Ourselves in the

Science: 3.8% Notable at Uncertain Principles : Last year, around this time, I posted a rant about the lack of science books in the New York Times's "Notable Books of 2007." While I was out of town last week, they posted this year's list. So, have things improved?Yes and no. They do, in fact, have two books

03:04
Embryonic Stem Cell Research offers Real Hope at Stem Cell Research Blog

Watch the trailer. It is worth it. Now go watch the movie. Learn about embryonic stem cell research and the real hope that it offers to billions of suffering people worldwide.

Stem Cells and the Politics of the Ethics of the Few at Mike the Mad Biologist : Over at What's New in Life Science, I have a post about embryonic stem cell research. Stop by and make Our Benevolent Seed Overlords happy.Read the comments on this post...

02:23
Langford's praying even harder now at Pharyngula

You all may recall the Holy Joe mayor of Birmingham, Alabama, who had a great plan to deal with urban crime: he bought 2,000 burlap bags so community leaders could dress in sackcloth and ashes and pray. Unfortunately, the federal authorities stuck to the old

Birmingham Mayor Arrested for Corruption at Dispatches from the Culture Wars : Remember Larry Langford, the mayor of Birmingham, Alabama, who held that public "sackcloth and ashes" prayer meeting to solve the problems in his city? He's been arrested by the FBI on 101 counts of corruption for taking bribes and kickbacks to funnel city

00:57
Chris Patil (ouroboros) on the Campisi lab's new PLoS Biology paper: cellular senescence, protein secretion, and the aging/cancer paradox at Terra Sigillata

I've kept a passing interest in senescence (cellular, not personal) over the last 20 years or so because I've always felt that attempts to increase longevity in a multicellular organism would also increase the risk of cancer (more seasoned readers may recognize

ouroboros at Ouroboros : One great feature of the open access movement is that it’s democratized the act of reading a scholarly paper: you don’t need a subscription or an academic appointment, just access to a computer and a web browser.But perhaps the OA folks have overly

Increased Secretion in Senescent Cells at The Daily Transcript : I just read a paper that features fellow science blogger Chris Patil as an author (although he would be the first to state that he was second on the author's list). The manuscript, which appeared in yesterday's edition of PLoS Biology, describes senescence-associated

00:45
Poznan: the next round of climate talks at Nature Newsblog

Jeff Tollefson, Nature's climate reporter, will be at the UN climate conference in Poznan, Poland, starting this weekend. He'll be posting updates from the meeting as they happen on this blog. For his preview of what to expect from the...

Virtual and real conferences on climate change at Nautilus : Nature Publishing Group (NPG) and Imperial College London are hosting a free virtual conference today on NPG's/Macmillan's Elucian Islands in Second Life. If you are interested in the science of climate change and carbon-dioxide storage and want to hear from

December 2, 2008

18:41
Will Merck's Atherosclerosis Drug Fare Better Than Pfizer's Did? at SeekingAlpha Biotech Stocks

Two years after Pfizer lost its big bet on torcetrapib, an experimental booster of good cholesterol, the failure still casts a pall on researchers working on similar drugs. Getty ImagesSide effects from torcetrapib may not doom similar drugs.Torcetrapib flamed

Torcetrapib: What Was the Problem? And Does It Matter? at In the Pipeline : Ever since the catastrophic failure of Pfizer's HDL-raising CETP inhibitor torcetrapib in late 2006, everyone involved has wondered just what the problem was. There was a definitely higher cardiovascular-linked death rate in the drug-treatment group as opposed

Latest Postmortem on Torcetrapib Leaves Hope for HDL Boosters at WSJ.com: Health Blog : Two years after Pfizer lost its big bet on torcetrapib, an experimental booster of good cholesterol, the failure still casts a pall on researchers working on similar drugs. Getty ImagesSide effects from torcetrapib may not doom similar drugs.Torcetrapib flamed

15:51
What's wrong with Google Blogsearch? at A Blog Around The Clock

Checking one's incoming links on Sitemeter, Technorati and Google Blogsearch is essential tool for a blogger - it allows one to notice responses to one's posts in approximately real time, so the blog-to-blog conversation can continue fluently.But, for a couple

Going mobile and QR codes at The Mr Science Show : For those of you who need your content on-the-go, we've mobilised Mr Science. You can now see the Mr Science Show in a mobile phone compatible format at m.mrscienceshow.com. And for those of you with an iphone, we have made a site especially for you here. To

15:41
Should Doctor Who Be a Woman? at Women in Science

Make of that post title what you will, but it’ll make sense once you watch this promo for the Christmas programming on BBC:Cool. Looks like they’ve made a Christmas special I’ll be happy to see! I was not thrilled with the last one (the Space

Doctor Who comes out of the Cybercloset at Bad Astronomy Blog : Make of that post title what you will, but it’ll make sense once you watch this promo for the Christmas programming on BBC:Cool. Looks like they’ve made a Christmas special I’ll be happy to see! I was not thrilled with the last one (the Space

14:00
Are surgical hospitalists here to stay? at Kevin, M.D. - Medical Weblog

 I was asked to write an op-ed about patient satisfaction for the current issue of Virtual Mentor which focuses on Hospitalists and Patient Care.  In my op-ed I focus on the challenges and opportunities that hospitalists face - Securing Patient SatisfactionHospitalists

Securing patient satisfaction at DB's Medical Rants :  I was asked to write an op-ed about patient satisfaction for the current issue of Virtual Mentor which focuses on Hospitalists and Patient Care.  In my op-ed I focus on the challenges and opportunities that hospitalists face - Securing Patient SatisfactionHospitalists

12:31
Berry Go Round #11 is up at Agricultural Biodiversity Weblog

With lots of great stuff, from pretty much all over the Plant Kingdom. Enjoy!

Berry Go Round # 11 - Berries, and more than just Berries at Catalogue of Organisms : Welcome to the eleventh edition of Berry Go Round, the monthly celebration of all things photosynthetic. Time to take a stroll through the blogging garden, and see what is showing itself this month.First off, consider where it all began. The Phytophactor takes

12:00
Did privacy laws get in the way of the Plaxico Burress case? at Kevin, M.D. - Medical Weblog

Associated PressNew York Giants receiver Plaxico Burress (right) arrives with unidentified man for arraignment at Manhattan Supreme Court. Who didnt call the cops? Thats what New Yorks Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the citys Deputy Police Chief Paul Browne would

NY Hospital Draws Mayors Ire Over Plaxico Burress Gunshot Wound at WSJ.com: Health Blog : Associated PressNew York Giants receiver Plaxico Burress (right) arrives with unidentified man for arraignment at Manhattan Supreme Court. Who didnt call the cops? Thats what New Yorks Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the citys Deputy Police Chief Paul Browne would

11:12
ouroboros at Ouroboros

One great feature of the open access movement is that it’s democratized the act of reading a scholarly paper: you don’t need a subscription or an academic appointment, just access to a computer and a web browser.But perhaps the OA folks have overly

Chris Patil (ouroboros) on the Campisi lab's new PLoS Biology paper: cellular senescence, protein secretion, and the aging/cancer paradox at Terra Sigillata : I've kept a passing interest in senescence (cellular, not personal) over the last 20 years or so because I've always felt that attempts to increase longevity in a multicellular organism would also increase the risk of cancer (more seasoned readers may recognize

10:38
World's Oldest Marijuana Stash Found at Slashdot: Science

jage2 writes "Researchers say they have located the world's oldest stash of marijuana in a tomb in a remote part of China. The cache of cannabis is about 2,700 years old and was clearly "cultivated for psychoactive purposes," rather than as fibre for clothing,

2,700 Year Old Cannabis Excavated in China at PhDiva : The 789 grams of dried cannabis was buried alongside a light-haired, blue-eyed Caucasian man, likely a shaman of the Gushi culture, near Turpan in northwestern China.Researchers high on ancient pot find - Canada Press.Apparently it was the high THC variety

World's Oldest Marijuana Stash Found at Slashdot: Science : jage2 writes "Researchers say they have located the world's oldest stash of marijuana in a tomb in a remote part of China. The cache of cannabis is about 2,700 years old and was clearly 'cultivated for psychoactive purposes,' rather than as fibre for clothing,

10:38
World's Oldest Marijuana Stash Found at Slashdot: Science

jage2 writes "Researchers say they have located the world's oldest stash of marijuana in a tomb in a remote part of China. The cache of cannabis is about 2,700 years old and was clearly "cultivated for psychoactive purposes," rather than as fibre for clothing,

2,700 Year Old Cannabis Excavated in China at PhDiva : The 789 grams of dried cannabis was buried alongside a light-haired, blue-eyed Caucasian man, likely a shaman of the Gushi culture, near Turpan in northwestern China.Researchers high on ancient pot find - Canada Press.Apparently it was the high THC variety

10:00
Choosing between internal medicine and family medicine at DB's Medical Rants

What are the differences between the two generalist fields? Academic internist Robert Centor gives his perspective, highlighting differences in philosophy, focus, program rigor, and the involvement of obstetrics and pediatrics.I found the observation about

Should you choose internal medicine or family practice? at Kevin, M.D. - Medical Weblog : What are the differences between the two generalist fields? Academic internist Robert Centor gives his perspective, highlighting differences in philosophy, focus, program rigor, and the involvement of obstetrics and pediatrics.I found the observation about