Daily Archives

Psoriasis May Benefit From Vitamin D In Several Forms

Empowher – Approximately 7.5 million people in the United States have psoriasis, as their immune systems mistakenly target healthy cells in an autoimmune response. A February 25, 2011 article on Mayoclinic.com explained the goals of psoriasis treatment. Inflammation and formation of plaque needs to be reduced by breaking the cycle of excessive skin cell production. Scales need to be removed and skin needs to be made smooth. Read article

US – Storms bring deadly weather, more due over weekend

(Reuters) – Severe storms hit the Midwest on Saturday and are expected later in the Northeast, where flash flooding killed at least four people in Pittsburgh on Friday. Read article

UK – Police payment emails growing worry for Murdoch executives

Reuters – Executives at Rupert Murdoch’s UK-based News International are concerned that emails discussing questionable payments made to police by the News of the World may prove more problematic than those that discuss phone hacking, sources familiar with investigations into the shuttered tabloid’s reporting practices said. Read Article

Iran roundly condemns Israeli airstrikes

PressTV – Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast has strongly condemned Israel’s new round of airstrikes on the Gaza Strip that killed and injured several Palestinians. Read article

Turkey strikes Kurd rebels in Iraq for third night

Reuters – Turkish warplanes struck Kurdish guerrilla targets in northern Iraq in a third consecutive night of airstrikes, military headquarters said on Saturday, adding that the planes had all returned safely to their bases. It said in a statement that in coordination with the air operations, Turkish artillery had also struck 85 targets in the region. Read Article

UK – Drilling sites a ‘threat to seabirds’

Independent – Important wildlife sites for seabirds such as puffins could be hit if an oil spill occurred in areas being considered for new fossil fuel exploration off the UK coast, conservationists warned today. Read article

US drone crashes in Somalia

Press TV – A US-flagged surveillance drone has crashed in the south of Somalia’s capital of Mogadishu near a refugee camp in Hodan district, Somali government officials say. The remains of the drone were removed by Somali government and African Union (AU) forces, a Press TV correspondent reported. Read Article

Apple is worth as much as all euro zone banks

Reuters – Technology company Apple is now worth as much as the 32 biggest euro zone banks. That’s the stark result from a steep fall in the share price of banks including Spain’s Santander, France’s BNP Paribas, Germany’s Deutsche Bank and Italy’s Unicredit, compared to a steady rise in Apple’s valuation, according to Thomson Reuters data. Read Article

Rhinos threatened with extinction to meet demand for bogus cancer cure

Guardian – Poaching in South African nature reserves has reached epidemic levels, driven by soaring demand for their horns. Read article

Europe – UPDATE 3- Spain unveils austerity measures, cuts sales tax

Reuters -  * Government unveils around 5 bln euros of savings

* Announces temporary halving of sales tax on house buys

* Steers away from sharp cuts ahead of November election

* Savings could cover any deficit overshoot by regions. Read Article

Virginia executes Jerry Jackson amid death-drug row

BBC – The US state of Virginia has executed a convicted murderer and rapist by lethal injection, despite objections from the drug manufacturer. Jerry Jackson, 30, was put to death on Thursday evening for the murder of 88-year-old Ruth Phillips. A shortage of drugs used in past US executions has forced Virginia authorities to rely on an epilepsy drug manufactured by Danish firm Lundbeck. Read Article

Researchers Show Gains in Finding Reusable Drugs

WSJ – In a bit of high-tech recycling, researchers have developed an innovative way to identify already-approved drugs that may work against diseases they weren’t designed to combat. The findings,… come as drug companies and the National Institutes of Health are putting greater emphasis on so-called drug repositioning as a way of lowering the costs of drug development and getting therapies to patients more quickly. Read article

Editorial Comment: It is also worth looking at the AFP article on this topic. The WSJ article was chosen for the inlcusion of comments from a non-study participant.

US – Number of Green Jobs Fails to Live Up to Promises

New York Times – Flanked by a cadre of local political leaders, Mayor Chuck Reed of San Jose used a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a solar power company last week to talk up the promise of the green economy. Read article

Egypt to withdraw Israel envoy over Sinai shootings

BBC – Egypt says it will withdraw its ambassador to Israel in protest at the deaths of five policeman, reportedly shot by Israeli forces on Thursday. Read article

U.S – BofA cutting 3,500 jobs this quarter: memo

Reuters – Bank of America Corp plans to cut 3,500 jobs in the next few weeks as CEO Brian Moynihan tries to come to grips with the bank’s $1 trillion pile of problem home mortgages. Read Article

Iran sentences 2 American men to 8 years in jail

Washington Post – Two American men arrested more than two years ago while hiking along the Iraq-Iran border have been sentenced to eight years in prison on charges that include espionage, state TV reported Saturday, in an apparent sharp blow to hopes that their release was imminent. The announcement seems to send a hard-line message from Iran’s judiciary — which answers directly to the ruling clerics — weeks after the country’s foreign minister suggested that the trial of Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal could clear the way for their freedom. Read Article

Libya: Gaddafi faces final battle as fighting erupts in Tripoli

The Telegraph – Gunfire, anti-aircraft fire and explosions rang out across the city on Saturday night as rebel commanders hailed the start of an attack on the dictator’s final stronghold. Residents reported fighting in neighbourhoods in the north, east and south-west of the city and said rebels were in the streets, although the Libyan government insisted the capital was “safe and stable”. Ibrahim, a rebel spokesman, said: “The revolution from inside Tripoli has officially started in many parts … of Tripoli, and is expected to spread to all of Tripoli.” Read Article

Aust/ Asia – Billion-dollar gas deal for Shell Aust

Sky News – Australia is set to start providing millions of tonnes of LNG to South Korea thanks to a multibillion-dollar deal. State-owned Korea Gas Corporation (Kogas) has announced it will buy 3.64 million tonnes of LNG annually from Australia for 20 years starting 2017. Read Article

Climate Fact Of The Day – Sources Of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Chart compiled using data provided by the US Department of Energy.

Three cancers share genetic link

BBC – A gene has been linked to at least three cancers in different tissues in the body, US researchers say. Their findings, reported in the journal Science, showed a fifth of melanomas (skin cancer), Ewing’s sarcomas (bone) and glioblastomas (brain) had a defective copy of the gene STAG2. It controls the way genetic material is divided between cells. A cancer charity said the study provided researchers with new ways of tackling the disease. Read article

Modified ecstasy ‘attacks blood cancers’

BBC – Modified ecstasy could one day have a role to play in fighting some blood cancers, according to scientists. Ecstasy is known to kill some cancer cells, but scientists have increased its effectiveness 100-fold, they said in Investigational New Drugs journal. Their early study showed all leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma cells could be killed in a test tube, but any treatment would be a decade away. A charity said the findings were a “significant step forward”. Read article

Hugo Chavez to nationalise Venezuela’s gold industry

BBC – “The area is run by the mafia,” the president said on state TV. “We’re going to nationalise gold. We can’t keep allowing them to take it away.” The biggest gold miner is Rusoro, a Canadian-listed company controlled by the Russian Agapov family. Read article

Aust- Gold reaches new high

Sky News – Gold rallied two per cent to a new high above $1,820(AUD) an ounce on Thursday after US data pointed to a stalled economy, while renewed concern about the health of European banks brought safe-haven buying. Read and Watch

’20 die’ in new Syria protests

Independent – Syrian security forces killed at least 20 protesters despite promises by President Bashar Assad that the military operations against the 5-month-old uprising are over. The killings, which came as thousands poured into the streets across Syria yesterday, suggest the autocratic leader is either unwilling to stop the violence — or not fully in control of his own regime. Read Article

Purified growth hormone not tied to brain disease

Reuters – Short kids who were treated with human growth hormone after 1977 — when scientists started purifying the hormone — aren’t as likely to get a devastating “mad cow”-like brain disease as a result, researchers said. Previous studies had reported a disturbing pattern of cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) – which causes a fast decline in mental functioning, and generally death within a year — in those who had taken the hormone in the 1960′s and early-to-mid-1970′s. Read article