May 14, 2013 |
JILL ROSS STEIN has a cherished photo of her father, Leonard Ross, and her son, Harry Ross Stein, at the Rodin Museum in Paris in June 2011. They are seated on a bench and her father is pointing at Rodin's "Gates of Hell" and very seriously explaining something to Harry, then 12, and Harry is taking it in. It would surprise no one that Leonard Ross knew all about Auguste Rodin, as he seemed to know all about so many subjects in science, history,...
May 3, 2013
IF I SAY "vegan rock star," Chrissie Hynde or Moby or Jason Mraz might come to mind. You wouldn't immediately think of T. Colin Campbell, 79, professor emeritus of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University. But Campbell's half-century of research in nutrition, hundreds of peer-reviewed papers and a key role in the world's most comprehensive study of health and nutrition, the "China Study," have surely made him a rock star in the plant-eating world. He summarized that groundbreaking study (which the New York Times called "the Grand Prix of epidemiology")
April 30, 2013 |
Repurposing an existing drug, researchers in Lancaster and Philadelphia reported last week that they had prevented seizures in an extremely rare form of epilepsy and suggested future lines of attack against more common types of the disorder. The immediate finding involves a neurodevelopmental disorder almost unheard of in the general population. But an estimated 4 percent of Old Order Mennonites in Lancaster County carry the genetic mutation. Offspring of two carriers develop what the community calls "pretzel syndrome" because of the odd patterns babies form with their limbs.
April 20, 2013
Garret FitzGerald, chair of the pharmacology department at the University of Pennsylvania, has been awarded the 2013 Grand Prix Scientifique, considered the world's most prestigious honor for cardiovascular research. FitzGerald shares the prize with Carlo Patrono, chair of pharmacology at Catholic University in Rome, for their work showing that low-dose aspirin can help prevent cardiovascular disease. The prize, valued at 500,000 euros ($650,000), will be awarded under the presidency of the chancellor of the Institut de France and the president of the French Academy of Sciences on June 5. In a statement, FitzGerald said he was delighted to receive the prize and to share it with Patrono, "a special friend for more than 30 years.
April 20, 2013 |
Jonathan Chernoff, chief scientific officer for Fox Chase Cancer Center, says the "slow-motion train wreck" that is sequestration is starting to damage the research laboratories at his institution. He has had to tell the leaders of five or six "productive" labs that they will have to drop employees when the new fiscal year starts in July. At least six people, most likely young scientists getting postdoctoral training, will lose their jobs. That's not a huge number, but Chernoff worries that this kind of instability will lead bright young people to take other work.
April 16, 2013 |
JEFFREY DEITCH majored in psychology, but eventually became more fascinated by what goes on inside the brain than its emotional reactions. He was intrigued by the "miracle of this extraordinarily well-oiled machine - our brains," said his son, Caleb Deitch. This fascination led him to the main thrust of his scientific work, the study of the crippling disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease, and the search for a cause and cure. "He found his life's professional path and passion," his son said.
April 14, 2013 |
F. Gardiner Pearson, 98, of Strafford, a longtime research chemist and amateur radio enthusiast, died Wednesday, April 3, of a heart attack at home. Born in 1914 in the Philadelphia suburbs, Mr. Pearson graduated from Episcopal Academy and Haverford College and in 1941 earned a doctorate in chemistry from the University of Pennsylvania. After graduation, he was hired as a research chemist for the American Viscose Corp., in Marcus Hook, which was later absorbed by FMC Corp., a chemical manufacturing company in Philadelphia.
April 14, 2013 |
Recently, this space has been devoted to reader complaints that builders of over-55 housing aren't meeting the physical and financial needs of aging baby boomers. It's a discussion that was initiated a few weeks ago by a reader who was disappointed by what she considered to be the options the market offered. In response, I received more than 100 e-mails and calls supporting her observations, some of which I quoted in a subsequent column. The result of that, of course, was 150 more e-mails.
April 11, 2013 |
Four University of Pennsylvania researchers have been awarded $2.4 million in grants to study pancreatic cancer. They were among $5 million in grants announced Wednesday by the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PCAN) and the American Association for Cancer Research. The money came from PCAN. Both groups were involved in choosing the grant recipients. Only 6 percent of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer are alive after five years. PCAN's goal is to double the survival rate by 2020.