Hits & Misses – 2008/12/03

Euthanasia Update. "According to data from Oregon, 341 people died in 11 years from lethal doses of medication provided by a physician. That amounts to 1 in 1,000 deaths per year, according to the state health department, although 1 in 50 dying patients discussed the possibility with their doctors and 1 in 6 with their families." [link]

Junk Food Update. "The average American eats $7 worth of food per day….The study showed that ‘energy dense' junk foods, which pack the most calories and fewest nutrients per gram, were far less expensive than nutrient-rich, lower-calorie foods like fruits and vegetables." [link]

Fake Drugs Update. "In Senegal, a 2002 study found that 21 out of 22 samples of the antibiotic ampicillin (of unknown origin) lacked the active ingredient and appeared to contain only flour. Thirty-eight percent to 52 percent of artesunate pills (an antimalarial drug) in Southeast Asia have been found to contain no active ingredient. The W.H.O. estimates that 20 percent of the Indian drug supply is either fake or adulterated. And one of my own studies found that 35 percent of malaria drugs in Africa are substandard." [link]

RNA Update. "This is potentially the biggest change in our understanding of biology since the discovery of the double helix." [link]

What Exactly is a Gene? "We can no longer think of genes as being single stretches of DNA at one physical location….Encode's results reveal the genome to be full of genes that are deeply weird, at least by the traditional standard of what a gene is supposed to be." [link]

Comments (2)

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  1. Larry C. says:

    You should mention that Washington also passed physician assisted suicide last month.

  2. Drew says:

    The striking thing is how much interest there is in physician assisted suicide.