Thursday, October 04, 2007

Of Interest

  • An (open-access) PLoS paper describes how the big drug companies contract out research management and paper-writing to help promote their products. The degree to which a sizable chunk of the peer-reviewed biomedical literature is manufactured in this way is worth at least being aware of.
  • While much ageing research these days seems to be directed toward the goal of "curing" it, at least one institution seems to be interested in understanding its benefits. "Defining Wisdom" is a University of Chicago initiative aiming to fund research that explores, well, just that, wisdom. Bravo.
  • Genomic instability is a hallmark of cancerous cells and makes them elusive therapeutic targets; interestingly, a new report from researchers at Mount Sinai in Toronto shows that this defect is also exhibited by yeast cells deficient in vitamin B6 (open access).
  • Kohanski et al. report in Cell a novel mechanism by which a variety of antibiotics can kill bacteria - induction of radical oxygen species. Who would've thunk it?
  • Velociraptors had feathers. That's one (actually a co-ordinated group of) damn-scary bird.
  • Scientist-bloggers from Judith Campisi's lab report on SENS3, the infamous cure ageing conference organized by long-bearded Aubrey de Gray.