Volume 398 Issue 6724, 18 March 1999


  • Opinion |

    Developments in biomedical research give rise to ethical dilemmas and public controversy around the world. New guidelines reflect the WHO's need to strengthen its role in helping governments and others address the issues.


  • News |

    london Britain's Wellcome Trust has been urging its US colleagues to bring forward the target date, according to John Sulston, director of the Sanger Centre for genome research in Cambridge.

    • Ehsan Masood
  • News |

    paris The World Health Organization is expected to take the first steps towards a comprehensive international legal text on the potential risks of developments in biology and medicine.

    • Declan Butler
  • News |

    new delhi India's parliament has agreed to amend the country's 29-year old patent law, belatedly falling in line with other members of the World Trade Organization.

    • K. S. Jayaraman
  • News |

    washington The National Institutes of Health has chosen Gary Nabel, a professor of internal medicine and biological chemistry at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, to head its new Vaccine Research Center.

    • Meredith Wadman
  • News |

    london The British government's latest measures to boost knowledge-driven economic growth, announced in last week's budget, have been greeted with wide applause.

    • Ehsan Masood
  • News |

    london The UK government now believes it is near the end of its checklist of measures to turn Britain into a knowledge driven economy.

    • Ehsan Masood
  • News |

    washington The University of Michigan has agreed to raise the undergraduate teaching wages of its striking graduate students by 10.5 per cent over three years.

    • Wil Lepkowski

News Analysis

  • News Analysis |

    With the rapidly burgeoning numbers of mouse mutants being produced, Europe's need for a repository and distribution centre has become urgent. The announcement that its mouse archive is to open is thus welcome.

    • Alison Abbott

News in Brief



  • Commentary |

    There are strong political pressures to relax the scrutiny of suspected biological weapons activity in Iraq. But the experience of United Nations inspectors in the country points to significant dangers in such a policy.

    • Christian Seelos

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    The experimental violation of Bell's inequalities confirms that a pair of entangled photons separated by hundreds of metres must be considered a single non-separable object — it is impossible to assign local physical reality to each photon.

    • Alain Aspect
  • News & Views |

    Trade in Arabian oryx, which are being poached from the wild and sold to illegally to private collectors, is threatening the long-standing oryx conservation project in Oman. Following a recent population crash caused by poaching, the project organizers have taken 40 animals back into captivity — where, if need be, they can form a breeding herd should wild oryx once again be wiped out in Oman.

    • Martyn Gorman
  • News & Views |

    Telomeres have long been suspected to be involved in ageing, and we now have the first direct evidence. Transgenic mice were generated bearing a deletion in the mTR gene, which is an essential component of telomerase, the enzyme that maintains telomeres. After six generations of inbreeding, newborn mice show many of the physiological changes associated with normal — but aged — mice.

    • David Kipling
    •  & Richard G. A. Faragher
  • News & Views |

    Copper-oxide superconductors were discovered over a decade ago, but the high value of their superconducting transition temperature, Tc, has remained a mystery. A new tool for measuring the long-range phase coherence — essential for superconductivity — of high-Tc materials may provide a route to the answer.

    • A. J. Millis
  • News & Views |

    Maize was domesticated 7,500 years ago from the wild Mexican grass teosinte. Early farmers would have selected for certain characteristics, and for many years the genes that encode these traits have been sought. New insights into these genes come from an analysis of genetic variation in one of them, teosinte branched1, and the results bear on the question of exactly how maize was domesticated.

    • Svante Pääbo
  • News & Views |

    Researchers met last month to discuss progress in the field of Bose-Einstein condensates -- a novel type of quantum matter discovered in 1995. Apart from devising a new technique to probe the nature of Bose-Einstein condensates, and developing 'atom optics', physicists are getting closer to creating a quantum Fermi gas.

    • Michael R. Andrews
  • News & Views |

    A functional canine bladder has been reconstructed from cells obtained by biopsy of the bladder wall. Cells from each side of the bladder wall were separately grown in culture, then seeded onto two sides of a bladder-shaped degradable polymer; the constructs were successfully implanted into dogs and continued to work like a real bladder for a year.

    • Jeffrey A. Hubbell
  • News & Views |

    Gravity waves — predicted by Einstein's general theory of relativity, but not yet detected — may one day reveal more about the very early Universe. They may also test theories of quantum gravity (the'unification' of quantum and gravitational forces), if a proposal to use gravity-wave detectors to probe the fuzziness of space-time becomes reality.

    • D. V. Ahluwalia
  • News & Views |

    One way to regulate the activity of transcription factors is to control the amount of time that they spend in the nucleus. This, in turn, can be modulated by exposing or blocking nuclear-localization and nuclear-export signals. A new regulatory mechanism is now proposed for a transcription factor called NF-AT4, and it seems that two other proteins, calcineurin and Crm1, compete for binding. The outcome of this battle determines whether an import or an export signal is uncovered.

    • Patrick G. Hogan
    •  & Anjana Rao
  • News & Views |

    With the great whales in decline, the krill on which they feed will be more abundant than ever. To make use of this bounty, Daedalus plans a robot ‘oceanic filter feeder’. The plan is to allow a small proportion of the catch to decompose, which will provide methane to power the craft and (when reacted with carbon dioxide) will generate acetic acid to preserve the rest of the harvest.

    • David Jones

Scientific Correspondence

Book Reviews


New on the Market

  • New on the Market |

    This week's selection of recent introductions has been slanted towards genetics, genomics and genes in general. Beads that bind DNA, membranes that capture RNA and several gene-expression systems feature.Compiled in the Nature office from information provided by the manufacturers.

Careers and Recruitment

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