Saturday, August 26, 2006

Politicized science produces bad public policy: "A new study about post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among Vietnam veterans once again spotlights the need to separate the process of establishing veterans' benefits from scientific research. Researchers reported in Science (Aug. 18) that among 260 Vietnam vets studied, 18.7 percent had developed war-related PTSD during their lifetimes and 9.1 percent were currently suffering from PTSD."

Arthritis breakthrough? "Some relief may be in sight for arthritis sufferers thanks to a small Brisbane private biopharmaceutical development company, C-Bio Ltd. The group is behind what researchers yesterday hailed as a medical breakthrough, discovering a new anti-inflammatory compound which could provide new hope for arthritis sufferers. An exploratory study published in the international medical journal, The Lancet, shows that the compound, known as chaperonin 10, proved in a double blind trial that it was safe and effective in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. The study findings show that clinical improvement was obtained in all patients who completed the trial. A small group of patients in the trial at the highest dose level experienced up to a 70 per cent improvement in symptoms and clinical remission was achieved in 13 per cent of patients. The researchers, from a multicentre study group including the University of Queensland, Monash University in Melbourne and Royal Perth Hospital used a compound developed by the Brisbane-based C-Bio Ltd, funded in part by the Federal government".

Chicago chefs file suit over foie gras ban: "Saying the City Council stuck its beak where it didn't belong, a restaurant association sued the city Tuesday in hope of making foie gras legal again. Meanwhile, a handful of chefs said they will continue to serve the duck and goose liver delicacy -- it just won't appear on the bill. 'The law says we can't charge for it. It doesn't say we can't give it away,' said Michael Tsonton, chef and partner at Copperblue. The ban was approved by the City Council in April and implemented Tuesday. Animal rights activists contend that the production of foie gras, which involves force-feeding ducks and geese to enlarge their livers, is inhumane. The lawsuit showed that chefs aren't content muttering in their kitchens about the ban."

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