Article metrics

    On the Record

    “We used to be afraid of comets. The dinosaurs should have been afraid of comets. Now it is the comet's turn to be afraid.”

    UCL space researcher Andrew Coates gets a little carried away describing NASA's Deep Impact mission, in which a probe crashed into the Tempel 1 comet (see News in brief).

    “The guidance offered in this article on how to anticipate, model and minimize a botulinum toxin attack can be valuable for biodefence.”

    Bruce Alberts, president of the US National Academy of Sciences, justifies publishing a paper modelling a bioterrorist attack with botulinum toxin.

    “If something bad happens as a result of this, it's the Department of Health and Human Services who will have to deal with it, not the academy.”

    US health department spokesman Marc Wolfson explains the agency's objections to the botulinum paper.


    Poisson distribution

    Thai fishermen have landed a whopper: a giant catfish tipping the scales at 293 kilograms. Making a splash as the largest freshwater fish on record, conservationists were keen for the behemoth to be set free. Sadly, it had already cashed its chips — cooked and eaten by its proud captors.

    Golden touch

    Isaac Newton's long-lost notes on alchemy have been found — but scholars are struggling to turn the written code into something they can read.

    Hard to swallow

    A study finds that processed duck meat exported from China to Japan in 2003 contained bird flu virus, giving rise to fears that it could be a threat to human health.

    Rights and permissions

    Reprints and Permissions

    About this article

    Cite this article

    Sidelines. Nature 436, 10 (2005) doi:10.1038/436010a

    Download citation

    Further reading


    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.